Taking note of the decrepit condition of the capital on Saturday, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif wrote to the Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad Mayor Sheikh Ansar Aziz to explain the failings of the CDA in its failure to maintain overall sanitation and cleanliness. It is refreshing to see the PM take note of such matters that impact the common man.

As per recurring reports, the CDA has been failing to keep up with its responsibilities, contributing to the rising levels of pollution, faulty street lights, unfit drinking water and the overall laxity in garbage removal within Islamabad. In a move that looks like responsible governance, the Prime Minister adopted a hardline stance with the CDA and CADD regarding the maintenance of the beauty and visual aesthetics of the city. He asserted that the minister should immediately suspend the responsible people and hold inquiry into the matter as to why these officials had failed in accomplishing the task in given timeframe.

It seems that the Prime Minister is taking a leaf out of Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif’s playbook and implementing a firmer approach with development authorities and civic bodies that have been idling with their responsibilities in the capital. The Chief Minister of Punjab has always adopted strict measures and comprehensible plans for the maintenance of the provincial metropolis. While many can disagree with the politics of the party and the scandals they have embroiled themselves in over the years, it must be conceded that in Punjab the party has set a benchmark for urban revitalisation to be emulated by other civic authorities.

Perhaps this is the right time for the PM to bring the focus back to good governance and efficient management of authorities that have been dithering of late. The ruling parties in each province will realise in time, that when good governance is taken up as a goal, there will be appreciation from the people, and this is a fool-proof way to stay in power with maximum legitimacy.