Shallwani’s appointment as city administrator a consensus decision, claims Sindh governor

Updated 08 Sep 2020

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Sindh Governor Imran Ismail  said Iftikhar Shallwani would meet the challenges and perform his duties in line with merit and fulfil his responsibilities. — Online/File
Sindh Governor Imran Ismail said Iftikhar Shallwani would meet the challenges and perform his duties in line with merit and fulfil his responsibilities. — Online/File

KARACHI: While the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan, a key coalition partner of the federal government and one of Karachi’s political stakeholders, raised serious concerns over appointment of “non-local officers” as heads of local governments in urban parts of the province, Sindh Governor Imran Ismail on Monday disclosed that the appointment of former commissioner Iftikhar Shallwani as administrator of Karachi was a consensus decision of “all stakeholders”.

The governor’s claim came during his meeting with Mr Shallwani who met him at Governor House and discussed issues pertaining to Karachi’s affairs and municipal administration.

The governor said Mr Shallwani would meet the challenges and perform his duties in line with merit and fulfil his responsibilities.

“During the meeting the Sindh governor apprised the Karachi administrator that he was appointed with a consensual decision of all the stakeholders,” said a statement issued by Governor House after the meeting. “The governor expressed his confidence that the administrator would utilise all his ability and capacity for resolving Karachi’s issues in his administrative tenure and prove his skills.”

MQM-P asks CJP to take notice of appointment of ‘non-residents’ as administrators

The governor also referred to the “historic” Rs1.1 trillion package announced by Prime Minister Imran Khan under the Karachi Transformation Plan to resolve the lingering and chronic issues of the city that included plans for supply of water, cleaning of drains and nullahs, building new sewerage system, solid waste disposal programme and introducing a mass transport system.

“This package will help resolve key infrastructure and development issues of the city. In the past, the governments ignored the areas of developments and provision of basic amenities. The federal government is committed to fix all the past mistakes and bring Karachi among the best cities of the world,” the governor said.

Mr Shallwani expressed his gratitude to the governor and vowed to meet all challenges through merit and honesty.

He also assured the governor of all-out efforts to fix the city’s issues under his administrative tenure.

The provincial government had last week appointed Mr Shallwani as the administrator of Karachi.

MQM-P voices concerns

Though Mr Shallwani’s appointment emerged as a result of discussions between the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) government in Sindh and the federal government of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, the MQM-P, a key partner of the PTI in the centre and one of the main political players in Karachi, called the move an injustice and discrimination on ethnic grounds.

“The MQM-P strongly condemns the decision to appoint non-resident officers as administrators in cities of Sindh including Karachi,” said the coordination committee of the party in a statement.

“The chief justice of Pakistan and people at the helm of affairs should take notice of such a move that kills merit and discriminates among people only on ethnic grounds. Such a decision would further increase the sense of deprivation among the people of urban Sindh,” the committee added.

Published in Dawn, September 8th, 2020