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FAISALABAD: City mayor Malik Abdul Razzaq has been found guilty of constructing a road midnight to allegedly favour his brother, Malik Mohammad Nawaz, who is contesting for PP-110 on the Pakistan Muslim League-N ticket, and the deputy commissioner has approached the Punjab government and the Election Commission of Pakistan for his suspension.

Submitting a letter, DC Syed Ahmed Fawad said the ECP through a notification had imposed restrictions on participation of mayors and other public office-holders in election campaign in any matter whatsoever.

Besides, the local government has also directed all public office-holders of local governments to strictly observe directions regarding non-participation in election campaign, otherwise stern action under section 4 of the Punjab Local Government Act 2013 would be taken.

The ECP has imposed a ban on new development schemes after April 1 last.

The DC said Razzaq Malik was serving as [elected] mayor of Municipal Corporation Faisalabad (MCF) and he (DC) received a report that the mayor was actively participating in different election campaigns which was a violation of the code of conduct.

Following the report, the DC said a show-cause notice was served on the mayor. Subsequently he was offered a personal hearing on July 6 and he had filed his written submission.

On non-submission of a satisfactory reply against the purported violation of code of conduct, a warning was issued to the mayor.

However, another report was received that the mayor participated in a gathering of a political party on the very day he was issued a warning. Furthermore, the DC said a report had been submitted that a road towards Ghosiaabad (Qudratabad) was carpeted on Saturday night.

“I have inspected the road the next day and found it newly constructed.”

He said the MCF chief officer was directed to produce the record of the scheme along with a brief report.

It transpired that the scheme had been approved in the annual budget session held on July 10, 2017, and approval of the tender was issued on Jan 22 last. The road was supposed to be completed by the contractor on June 2 last. The completion of the scheme during the election campaign on the orders of the mayor amounts to political canvassing and favouritism.

“It is evident that Abdul Razzaq Malik has been constantly involved in violation of the para-18 of the code of conduct for the elections 2018,” the DC said.

Published in Dawn, July 11th, 2018