KARACHI - The Pakistan Muslim League-Functional of Pir Pagara, which is an ally of PML-N’s government in Centre, has welcomed the step of PPP’s Sindh government for restoration of Local Government Ordinance 1979.
PML-F Sindh secretary-general and party’s parliamentary leader in Sindh Assembly, Imtiaz Ahmed Shaikh while speaking to the media said that his party welcomed the Sindh government over restoration of the LG system 1979.
He also demanded the PPP government to announce the schedule of local bodies’ elections in the province.
It may be noted that the PML-F was part of the last PPP-led coalition government but it quit the ruling alliance when the PPP and MQM brought the Sindh Peoples Local Government Act 2012, which caused a wave of protest and agitation against the PPP in the province.
The PML-F and other parties along with nationalist groups formed a 10-party opposition electoral alliance against the PPP and fought general elections in the province.
After quitting the ruling coalition by the MQM just one month before the completion of government’s tenure, the PPP abolished the SPLGA 2012 and revived the old local government ordinance 1979.
The LG bodies/institutions were continued working under the 2012 act till transition period of June 30, 2013, as the Sindh government did not enhance the transition period of 2012 LG system. Just one day after, on July 1, Sindh government fully restored the LG Ordinance 1979 in the province.
After restoring, the pressure is mounting on the PPP government by the opposition parties to hold local bodies’ elections in Sindh.
However, PML-F leader Imtiaz Ahmed Shaikh said lots of improvement is needed in the 1979 LG system.
Meanwhile, the PPP leaders have also arguing that they will hold fresh negotiations with the parliamentary parties in the Sindh Assembly, including MQM, PML-F, PTI and PML-N to bring amendments in the LG ordinance 1979.
However, the analysts said that the PPP government was not in a mood to hold LG elections in near future.
Meanwhile, Muttahida Qaumi Movement has rejected the 1979 LB system promulgated by Sindh government and demanded to resume 2001 local bodies ordinance.
MQM coordination committee member Kunwar Naveed Jamil in a press conference at Khursheed Begum Hall termed implementation of conventional system as undemocratic and unjustified. He said that the PPP sought to rule with feudal mindset and reluctant to address the issues of the common people.
Going deep into details, he said that the political powers of the local bodies had been curtailed as for every decision to be taken; the municipal councils would have to seek approval of the commissioner.
Under the new system, the provincial financial commission would stop functioning, which was responsible for handling finances of the institutions, schools, playgrounds, hospitals and clinics belonging to the local government, and the money will now go to the Sindh government, said the MQM leader.
He said that the 1979 system had taken away the administrative rights of the local bodies and the cities across the province had become the garbage dumps as the authorities had no money to pay to their workers.
The party which has been critical of UK since its chief Altaf Hussain admitted about the raids by Scotland Yard, also attacked the country in the press conference. Jamil said that the local body system of 1979 was in fact introduced by the British imperialist in the sub-continent.