PESHAWAR: Speaker Mushtaq Ahmad Ghani has sought Chief Minister Mahmood Khan’s help to ‘tame’ administrative secretaries to cooperate with the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly Secretariat in disposing of parliamentary business.
“Mr Chief Minister, I have given ruling to administrative secretaries on many occasions, directing them to ensure timely reply to questions of lawmakers related to different departments. My rulings did not leave any impact,” complained Speaker Mushtaq Ghani.
Chairing the sitting on Wednesday, he lamented that administrative secretaries did not take the assembly’s business serious and secretariat received answers of questions very late that irritated lawmakers.
This is worth mentioning that the speaker had been directing administrative heads of the departments to cooperate with his secretariat, despite that the secretaries did not respond properly. Earlier PPP lawmaker Nighat Orakzai protested against not receiving official reply of a question related to provincial Ehtesab Commission.
Chief Minister Mahmood Khan on this occasion directed to take action against the official, who did not submit reply to the assembly’s secretariat.
Ghani complains about late reply by administrative secretaries
The speaker abruptly adjourned the sitting when treasury and opposition lawmakers exchanged barbs. PML-N MPA Sobia Shahid entered the House with a placard seeking justice for imprisoned leader of the party Mian Nawaz Sharif that caused commotion.
Earlier Minister for Health Dr Hisham Inamullah Khan admitted in the House that 60 per cent posts of specialist doctors were lying vacant in referral hospitals of the province.
Speaking on the floor of the House during question hour, he pledged to ensure presence of doctors in all referral hospitals within a period of one month. He said that the department had started extensive exercise to streamline healthcare system and work on digitalisation plan was in progress.
The minister said that problems existed in the referral hospitals and patients were directly referred to major hospitals from primary and secondary health units in the far flung areas of the province. He said that the department would start upgradation of hospitals in the districts after evaluating its resources.
MMA lawmaker Inayatullah Khan, through his question, drew the government’s attention towards condition of healthcare units in Upper Dir district. He said that the department had launched standardisation of tehsil and district headquarters hospitals project about two years ago to upgrade health facilities.
He said despite awarding contracts, construction work had not been started. The government has estimated total cost of the project at Rs3.46 billion. The mover said that patients were being referred to major hospitals owing to lack of doctors and equipment at the district level hospitals.
Responding to another question of the same mover, the health minister said that government had distributed 1.5 million Sehat Insaf Cards and 800,000 would be issued to deserving people in near future.
He said that the cards would cover 69 per cent of the population in the province. He insisted that health protection initiatives including card system were part of the Universal Health Care.
The mover said that Pakistan was signatory to Sustainable Development Goals and Sehat Insaf Card was not equitable to ensure health coverage of people. He said that being signatory to SDG, the government was bound to ensure health coverage of its people.
The assembly passed Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Education Employees Foundation Bill, 2018 after including several amendments moved by ANP and MMA lawmakers Salahud Din and Inayatullah Khan, respectively.
The bill aims at promotion, welfare, assistance, facilitation and benefit of the employees of the education department and their families.
The House also passed Employees of Transport department (Regularisation of Services) (Amendment) Bill, and KP Employees of the Elementary and Secondary Education Department (Appointment and Regularisation of services) (Amendment) Bill, 2018.
Published in Dawn, December 27th, 2018