PESHAWAR: The members of opposition parties in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly have decided to withdraw their resignations they had tendered around two months ago to leave standing committees of the house as protest against what they called the step-motherly attitude of the government.

The opposition members took the decision to withdraw resignations in a meeting held with Chief Minister Mahmood Khan in chair at the KP Speaker’s House.

On April 24, the opposition members had resigned from the chairmanship and membership of all the standing committees after a heated debate in KP Assembly on alleged discrimination in the allocation and release of funds to the MPAs of opposition parties.

Besides the chief minister, the meeting was also attended by Speaker Mushtaq Ahmed Ghani, deputy speaker Mahmood Jan and provincial ministers Qalandar Khan Lodhi, Shaukat Yousafzai, Sultan Khan and Taimur Saleem Jhagra from the government side.

The opposition parties were represented by Leader of the Opposition in KP Assembly Mohammad Akram Khan Durrani, MPAs Sardar Yousaf of PML-N, Sardar Hussain Babak of ANP, Inayatullah and Mian Nisar Gul of MMA and Sher Azam Wazir of PPP.

The meeting concluded successfully with the opposition members, according to a statement issued by provincial minister Shaukat Yousafzai late on Thursday. “The government has assured the opposition members that all their genuine demands would be fulfilled,” he said in the statement.

After accepting their demands, he said, the opposition parties assured the government that they would not disrupt the upcoming session of the assembly to be convened for the passage of provincial budget 2019-20.

During the meeting, the chief minister said that the constituencies of the opposition MPAs would not be ignored while allocating development funds in the fiscal budget to be tabled in the assembly next week.

The leader of the opposition also assured the chief minister that the opposition parties would extend all possible support to them in resolving issues.

Talking to Dawn, MMA MPA Inayatullah Khan said that as the government and opposition had agreed on all issues there was no justification for sticking to the resignations from the standing committees.

Firstly, he said, the government had ignored the opposition MPAs in allocation of development funds in the previous budget. Secondly, he said, the provincial government had also denied them the release of development funds though it was meagre. After stoppage of the development funds by the government, the opposition MPAs were in trouble, as completion of the ongoing development schemes were not possible.

The appointment of class-IV employees was also a serious issue and now the government had agreed that the opposition MPAs would have their share in this regard, he said. The meagre or non-release of share in the funds of oil and gas royalties to the southern districts was also one of the issues leading to the resignations.

Inayatullah Khan said that the government had agreed with the opposition that due share would be released to the districts concerned. He said that the government also accepted the opposition members’ demand to compensate them in the upcoming budget as in the previous budget they were mostly ignored in allocation of development funds.

Published in Dawn, June 15th, 2019