KARACHI - Sindh Minister for Labour Syed Nasir Hussain Shah has said that former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (ZAB) had established Social Security Institution for the betterment of labourers and industrial workers, and Bilawal Bhutto Zardari will carry it on.

“Benazir Health Card has been introduced to further ameliorate the living conditions of workers in a more transparent manner,” he added.

He was presiding over the budget meeting of governing body of Sindh Employees Social Security Institution (SESSI) here at SESSI’s head office on Saturday.

The meeting was attended by representatives of employers Zahid Saeed and Shah Jahan Shaikh, representative of workers/employees Muhammad Khan Abro, Secretary of Labour Abdur Rasheed Solangi, Secretary Industries Abdur Raheem Soomro, Officials of health and finance departments, SESSI Commissioner Farooq Leghari, Vice Commissioner Shah Muhammad Shah, Medical Advisor Dr Mumtaz Ali Shaikh and other concerned officials. Addressing the meeting, the minister stressed the need for providing maximum facilities to the workers in a transparent manner as the funds belonged to them and these would be utilized for the needy and eligible ones.

He exhorted the concerned field officers and staff to gear up their efforts and secure the industrial workers in their respective fields.

He hinted at discouraging purchasing medicines from local manufacturers, and added that reputable and multinational companies would be engaged to provide quality medicines to the needy.

Nasir further said that many development projects had been launched in the current financial year, including establishment of a Burns Ward in Landhi and a Cardiovascular Ward in Valika Hospital besides two 25-bed hospitals would be built during the year at a cost of Rs110 million.

Representative of Employers Zahid Saeed suggested that employers were ready to cooperate for the enhancement of SESSI contribution.

“The matter will be discussed in the next meeting scheduled to be held on 23 August while a committee has been constituted,” he informed.

 Representative of employees M Khan Abro suggested that SESSI must follow the financial discipline as the institution belonged to workers and all assignments should be completed transparently for the benefits and welfare of workers.

SESSI Commissioner Farooq Leghari presented the revised budget expenditures Rs4.537.778  million for the previous year 2016-17 while Rs5.573.802 million for 2017-18, which were approved by the members unanimously.

While giving major expenditure details and citing new projects and achievements, he informed that 69.430 new secured industrial workers had been added to the existing 720.920 secured workers’ list in 2017-18 and facilities extended to them by SESSI.

He thanked the members for their support for passing the budgets for 2016-17 and 2017-18 with the aim to provide maximum facilities and incentives to the workers as per the government’s policy.

Secretary Labour Abdur Rasheed Solangi also spoke on the occasion, and directed the field officers to pay more attention to the registration of secured workers under the banner of SESSI for their benefits and welfare; otherwise disciplinary action would be taken against those found negligent.