KARACHI    -  Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that the one-year performance of the federal government of PTI is so dismal that it cannot be counted as governance for the people and by the people but it was a 12-month suppression of the people by the government.

This he said on Sunday morning while talking to media just after launching tree plantation drive in the courtyard of the British-era Frere Hall by planting a sapling of Neem Tree. The programme was organised by Sindh Forest Department and was attended by almost all the cabinet members and a large number of senior government officers.

The chief minister said that the performance of a government anywhere in the world, particularly in the third world countries was judged from its public-welfare policies but here in Pakistan the PTI government set an ambitious tax recovery target and just to achieve it imposed heavy taxes and unleashed a wave of awe and fear among the investors to achieve its targets. As a result, the investors instead of expanding their investments started slashing whatever they had already invested. Therefore, a large number of employees rendered jobless.

Shah said that in such circumstances almost everyone, including salaried class and the labour class were faced with under-employment like situation. People keep running from pillar to post all the daylong to meet bread and butter for their families. “The salaried class cannot meet his domestic expenditures from his salary,” he said. Elaborating his point further, he said that Stock Exchange which was at 42,000 points has dropped down to 28,000 points, the dollar is at its highest exchange rate and price of petrol has gone up, therefore the prices of everything, right from vegetable, flour, chicken, meat and other eatables have soared to an unprecedented level. “Yes, these are the one-year achievements of the one year of PTI government in the center,” he said and urged the government to work for the welfare of the people and let the others [provinces] work.

Violation of Constitution

 The chief minister said that the [fed] government which could not comply with constitutional requirements how could it be expected to work for the welfare of the people. Giving an example Legislative List Part-II of the Constitution, Mr Shah said that the federal government was bound to convene CCI meeting after every 90 days but the last meeting was held in November. “Now 10 months have passed but the meeting of CCI, the most important forum where issues like of power, water, gas and such others are discussed have not been convened.

Murad Shah said that similarly, the National Economic Council (NEC) meeting under the constitution was required to be held twice a year but they were not serious into it. They had convened a NEC meeting before the budget 2019-20 because they had to discuss the PSDP projects but he [PM] had left the meeting in middle.

Reshuffle in Cabinet

The chief minister replying to a question said that all the portfolios of the provincial government were the responsibilities and functions of the chief minister. The chief minister assigns his function to his cabinet members to distribute his workload.

He said that the allocation of the portfolios was given to ministers in consultation with the party leadership. “There is no plan on cards to make another reshuffle in the cabinet but when its need is felt it would be made e again under the guidance of the party chairman,” he said.

Talking about the portfolio of education department, the chief minister said that Syed Sardar Shah did good job as an education minister and now he was doing good work in Culture.

Murad Ali Shah, to a question said that they wanted him to disqualify from last many years but failed. “Again they have made another attempt but every time God gives him respect,” he said.

Lifting of trash

Answering a question, the chief minister said that the lifting of garbage and sweeping of trash was the job of the DMCs and the cleaning of Nalas was the responsibility of the KMC. “Despite financial crunch the provincial government has given Rs550 million to KMC to clean the nullahs,” he said and added the out of six, four DMCs through the council resolution had given their cleaning and lifting of trash and garbage assignment to Sindh Solid Waste Management Authority (SSWMA). The authority was doing to some extent better work in South and East but their performance in West was not satisfactory, he said and added “he was personally monitoring their SSEWMA performance and would improve it further under the Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Shah.

Tree Plantation

The chief minister said that Karachi was facing shortage of trees, therefore he has started his drive right from the city of father of nation. He added that this drive would be continued all over Sindh. “We have to improve density of our forest and trees in the cities for better environment,” he said and added apart from planting neem trees we must plant fruit trees to attract birds of different species.

He directed all the deputy commissioners to plant trees in their respective districts and look after them properly till they become complete trees. “We are also going to ban plastic bags/shoppers in the province from October 1 and giving people an alternate of paper bag/cloth bag,” he said and hoped people of Sindh would support the cause.

Earlier, the chief minister in the garden of Frere Hall planted a sapling of Neem Tree. The cabinet members of the chief minister, including Forest Minister Nasir Shah, the host, Sindh PPP President Nisar Khuhro, Saeed Ghani, Syed Sardar Shah, Ismail Rahu, Murtaza Baloch, Faraz Dero, advisors Murtaza Wahab, Aijaz Shah Shirazi, Qasim Naveed and others planted saplings there.

Meanwhile, Sindh Minister for Information & Archives Saeed Ghani on Sunday said that the one year rule of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaaf has so far been full of blunders and despair. Ghani said that incompetence, inexperience, ineptitude, incapability and self-righteousness were the hallmark of the PTI government. The minister said that the promise of good governance seemed far from being fulfilled.  Instead bedlam, dysfunctioning of administration, chaos and mayhem remained the buzzword during last one year, he added. He said that leaders of the PTI should not have made overstatements before coming to the power. 

Ghani said that the people of the country went through the most difficult times of their lives during the last one year of the PTI regime. The Minister said that Imran Khan was doing everything that he had censured the previous governments for. He said that the Prime Minister failed to deliver every promise he made before coming into the power and the performance of his cabinet during last year was quite reprehensible.

Every such scheme that had been once labeled by Imran Khan as ‘legalized corruption’ had now been adopted by him, the Minister said. Saeed Ghani said that people had been only given the pack of lies during last year. The Minister said that for Imran Khan taking U-turns was the quality of a good leadership. He said that economic turmoil was another feature of PTI government during its first year.  His so called austerity drive was also just nominal as the order of 70 luxury vehicles for his Punjab cabinet ministers was no more a secret, Saeed Ghani said. The cost of these vehicles was much higher than the money fetched by selling the luxury vehicles of the Prime Minister House, he added.

The Minister said that the performance of the PTI for the last one year was neither striking nor impressive but it was full of lies and U-turns. He said that instead of creating 10 million jobs and building five million homes the PTI regime’s policies had resulted in unemployment and homelessness. People today were unable to acquire and maintain regular, safe, secure and adequate housing due to unsteady income which was a result of the unplanned economic policies of Niazi’s regime, Saeed Ghani said. He said that owing to constant partial accountability and use of National Accountability Bureau for personal vendetta the bureaucracy was not willing to take any responsibility for any decision.  Even after the premature change of financial authorities, the tax reforms of the present regime had also failed miserably, the Minister said. Saeed Ghani said that the first year of the PTI government lacked both the direction to move on as well as the decisions that were promise to change the destiny of the nation.

 The Minister said that performance of the PTI government in Punjab and KP was also not up to the required standard.

It had already been implicated in a scandal involving metro bus project that was launched in 2017 in KP, he said. Saeed Ghani said that the PTI government during the last one year had failed at almost all the fronts predominantly the economy.  The Minister said that there seemed no prior planning or homework on part of the leadership of the PTI that resulted in the server suffering of the poor people of this country. He said that the leadership of the PTI was only consistent in one thing during the complete past year and that was ‘politically driven accountability’.