Sindh CM urged to give PAC chairmanship to opposition in 'spirit of democracy'

08 Jan 2019

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Sindh's opposition parties decide to raise the issue of PAC chairmanship in the Sindh Assembly session on Wednesday. — File photo
Sindh's opposition parties decide to raise the issue of PAC chairmanship in the Sindh Assembly session on Wednesday. — File photo

Firdous Shamim Naqvi, the Leader of the Opposition in Sindh Assembly, on Tuesday urged Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah to fulfil his party's promise of giving to the opposition the chairmanships of eight standing committees, including that of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) by the next session.

The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf leader, in a letter addressed to the chief minister, reminded him that PPP leaders "had agreed that eight committee chairmanships will be given to the opposition".

Naqvi put forth the demand that "keeping with the spirit of democracy, the chairmanship of PAC" and Rules of Procedure and Privilege Committee should go to the opposition.

"We hope that for the better working of the legislative and improved efficiency of the parliamentary assembly you would announce the standing committee prior to the assembly session on Wednesday," he added.

Prior to submitting the letter, an important meeting of the opposition parties — including parliamentary leaders of PTI, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and the Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA) — was held in the Sindh Assembly, with Naqvi at the helm.

During the meeting, it was observed that the National Assembly had appointed its PAC chairman, but in Sindh, the provincial government had still not done so.

It was agreed that the issue of the PAC chairmanship would be raised during the next Sindh Assembly session on Wednesday and if PPP does not immediately appoint the chairman, the opposition would boycott the session.

Naqvi wrote a second letter to the speaker of the Sindh Assembly, informing him that "the opposition had already proposed the names from the opposition benches" for the Business Advisory Committee but that "the treasury has yet to confirm their members from their side."

The opposition leader said "it would be appreciated if this committee [is] announced before the session starting Wednesday, 9 Jan 2019."

On December 13, after a long impasse, the government had agreed to let the Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif chair the PAC in the NA — a longstanding demand by opposition benches in the assembly.