KARACHI: Federal Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar on Saturday claimed that Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah had once directly complained to him about the federal government-funded projects in the province raising objections over Islamabad’s role in areas under his administrative control.
However, the federal minister made it clear that the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government never backed off due to such complaints and it was in fact filling the gap created by the Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) provincial administration due to its incompetence and bad governance.
Criticises PPP govt for passing ‘black law’ on local govt
“Once in a meeting Murad Ali Shah made a complaint to me that why the federal government is launching and executing projects in my province,” he said while addressing a ceremony organised by a welfare body, Ummah Charity International, to donate rickshaws and other resources to unemployed youngsters so that they could earn livelihood.
“I simply replied because you are not doing. There is no system in place [in Sindh] so we have to intervene and play our role. The system comes through a strong and empowered local bodies system and that system has been further paralysed by the Sindh government through new law [Sindh Local Government [Amendment] Act 2021],” the federal minister added.
He reiterated that the PTI government in the centre was in favour of a strong local bodies system. He criticised the PPP government for passing a “black law” on the local government and vowed that the federal government would keep playing its role for the people of Karachi and other parts of Sindh. He then recalled how the federal government’s intervention led to benefits for the people of the province and it was during the coronavirus pandemic when the PTI government at the centre had dispersed more than Rs60 billion among the deserving individuals in Sindh alone.
He also criticised the PPP government for negating the philosophy and ideology of the party’s founding chief and former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who was the staunch supporter of true devolution of power.
Published in Dawn, January 9th, 2022