PESHAWAR - Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister (CM) Mahmood Khan has said that despite the financial constraints due to the prevailing situation, arising out of the coronavirus, development portfolio of the province in the next budget will not be compromised.

He expressed these views while chairing a meeting of the provincial cabinet here on Thursday.

He said that a major chunk of the upcoming Annual Development Programme (ADP) would be allocated for the completion of the ongoing developmental schemes.

The CM said that strengthening of the health infrastructure so that it could be able to cope with the challenges thrown by the corona pandemic would be the top priority of the provincial government in the next financial budget.

The chief minister further said that 100 percent amount had been released against the allocations made for the development projects prior to the corona situation, but the pace of utilization of funds had slowed down due to the lockdown, adding that however, at least 85 percent utilization of the released funds would be ensured by the end of this current financial year (FY).

“Soon after the approval of the budget for FY 2020-21, all the departments will be given strict timelines for the completion of development schemes,” Khan said, and added that concerned ministers and administrative secretaries of the departments would be bound to ensure the completion of these schemes as per the given time frame, failing which they would be taken to the task.

He directed the cabinet members and administrative secretaries to concentrate on their development budget and to regularly review progress on the development schemes so that these schemes were timely completed.

“As a chief minister, I have given full authority to the ministers, advisers and special assistants with regard to the affairs of their respective departments and as such they are responsible for better performance of their departments,” the CM said, and directed all departments’ heads to ensure hundred percent achievement of the targets set for their departments in order to ensure better service delivery.

The chief minister directed the high-ups of Elementary and Secondary Education Department to ensure implementation of the E-Transfer policy in true letter and spirit for the postings and transfers of teachers.

Khan made it clear that henceforth no teacher would either be posted or transferred in violation of the policy.

He also directed high-ups of the administration to make necessary arrangements for holding the cabinet meetings at least twice a month after the end of this financial year, adding that necessary arrangements would also be made for maintaining social distance during these meetings.

Talking about the wheat and flour situation in the province, Mahmood Khan said that all available options would be utilized to ensure the availability of essential items to people of the province.

Regarding situation in the province with respect to coronavirus, the chief minister said that it was prime minister’s vision to not only contain the spread of the pandemic but to also protect vulnerable segments of the society from poverty.

Fateha was also offered at the meeting for the eternal peace of the souls of MNA Munir Orakzai, MPA Jamshaid Kakakhail and health professionals who have recently lost their lives due to the corona pandemic.