LAHORE - Punjab Governor Makhdum Ahmad Mahmud has said the wish of the people of district Mianwali and Bukkar will be respected if they do not want to be part of the proposed Bahawalpur Janoobi Punjab province.

The creation of new provinces will produce true representatives who will not be forced out of the country, he said while talking to media at Lahore Press Club Tuesday.

“Those who are criticising the new provinces are actually not the stakeholders. Establishment of new provinces is not a political but the administrative and the issue of governance,” the governor added.

He said true representatives would come up as a result of new provinces and they would be strong enough that no one would dare send them abroad.

Mahmud said he had advocated for the said province when he saw preparation and distribution of the Punjab budget. He said the commission on the new provinces was formed following resolution of the Punjab Assembly which also demanded immediate restoration of Bahawalpur province.

The governor said every stakeholder gave his input before the commission wherein it was also proposed that Behawalpur, Multan and DG Khan should be merged into single province under the nomenclature of Bahawalpur province.

“They are blamed for setting up a language based province but tell us which province is not language based. They want creation of new provinces on the administration basis,” Mahmud added.

The governor also grilled the Punjab government for the massive spending on Metro Bus and said this money could have been spent on education and health side.

Answering a question on the replacement of governors before the elections, as demanded by leader of the Opposition Ch Nisar Ali Khan, he said the 20th amendment did not provide for this measure. He termed the next elections ‘mother of all elections’ and said they must be free, fair and transparent as they relate to the stability and survival of the country.

Replying to another query on the energy crisis in the country, he said after 18th amendment, provinces had been delegated the power to generate their own energy and regretted that the provinces had failed to meet their responsibility in this regard.

However, he said, we all must lay heads together to find out a solution to this problem. He mentioned about the energy projects in the pipeline and expressed the hope that energy crisis would be over.