Islamabad - Ad-hocism is the order of the day at Capital Development Authority (CDA) as currently there are only two permanent board members instead of a total of five, while the rest of the wings of the civic body are working under temporary heads.
Meanwhile, dozens of other officers are also working one step above their original grades due to shortage of staff in CDA by taking current charge postings, which includes 4 officers of grade 19, 28 officers of grade 18 and 20 officers of grade 17.
The CDA board is an apex forum of decision-making, comprising Chairman CDA and five board members including member administration, member finance, member estate, member planning and design and member engineering while chief commissioner Rawalpindi and chief commissioner Islamabad are its ex-officio members.
Each of the members is an executive head of his respective wing, which comprises of multiple directorates.
The post of members is of grade-20 and federal government can directly appoint a member in case of vacancy. Currently, there are only two permanent members including member finance Dr Fahad Aziz, who is a grade-20 officer of the Pakistan Audit and Accounts Service and Member Estate Khushal Khan, a grade-20 officer of the Pakistan Administrative Service.
However, the posts of the other three members are completely vacant. The post of member administration became vacant after the departure of former member Muhammad Yasir Pirzada from CDA. Currently, a grade 20 officer of CDA, Nadeem Akbar Malik is running the day to day affairs of the Administration wing on look after charge.
Similarly, the post of Member Planning and Design had become vacant recently after the retirement of its last occupant Asad Mehboob Kiani. Hafiz Muhammad Ahsan-ul-Haq, a grade 20 officer of CDA is currently looking after the affairs of the said wing on look after charge. Furthermore, a grade 19 officer Hafiz Ahmed Bakhsh was appointed by the federal government as Member Engineering after the retirement of the predecessor Shahid Sohail but his appointment was challenged by some of the grade 20 senior officers of the civic body in Islamabad High Court (IHC).
The officers argued before the court that appointing a junior officer is a violation of their fundamental rights. The IHC ordered Hafiz Ahmed Bakhsh to stop working till the final order in the case. Resultantly, he was removed from the post and additional charge of the post was given to member planning Hafiz Ahsan-ul-Haq, who is already working on the look after charge of the member planning. Sources inside the human resource directorate of CDA confirmed that a large number of employees are also working one step above their actual grades due to the shortage of officers.
The CDA officer blamed slow process of promotions as the major hurdle, since dozens of officers qualify for their promotions by fulfilling the criteria but their cases are still pending since many years.