LAHORE – While seeking acceleration in the pace of work on the Metro Bus Project, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif on Tuesday directed the construction company to complete the assignment in time.

Presiding over a high-level meeting to review work on the Metro Bus Project at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat, Shahbaz said that all departments concerned should evolve a coordinated strategy in this connection and warned that no delay would be tolerated in the execution of the project. Expressing displeasure over the slow pace of work by some institutions, he directed that all impediments to the completion of the project be immediately removed.

The chief minister said that though the City Traffic Police had made good arrangements on all routes, yet alternative traffic arrangements should have been made at the places about which public complaints were received. “All possible steps should be taken to facilitate the commuters,” he stressed.

Shahbaz directed that a public awareness campaign should be launched, besides shifting the poles of streetlights, at the earliest. He also directed that parking spaces should be made at metro bus stations.

The chief minister issued instructions to the authorities concerned regarding installation of escalators at these stations, along with expeditious completion of the remaining development work. He also sought foolproof security arrangements on the entire route of the Metro Bus Project and emphasised that construction material should be expeditiously transferred to the site.

Shahbaz directed the PHA director general to undertake beautiful landscaping along the entire route of the Metro Bus Project in line with the policy of the Punjab government. He also ordered that a strategy be devised to outsource metro bus stations.

Meanwhile, Shahbaz Sharif on Tuesday called for improving the efficiency of the Punjab Municipal Development Fund Company (PMDFC), which has been established for the purpose of building the capacity of local governments in the province.

While addressing a meeting held in connection with the PMDFC, the chief minister asked the department concerned to ensure complete transparency in the purchase of machinery for local government projects. He directed that the latest techniques for solid waste management and sanitation be adopted in all districts of Punjab, not just Lahore. He also ordered a third-party audit of the PMDFC machinery.

Separately, Shahbaz Sharif on Tuesday announced to host a two-day international seminar on dengue in Lahore next month. He said that with the grace of Allah, good strategy and hard work, dengue virus remained largely under control this year.

While presiding over a high-level meeting to review arrangements for the anti-dengue international seminar at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat, the chief minister said that the anti-dengue seminar would be held on November 10-11 and that it would be attended by anti-dengue specialist doctors from Sri Lanka, Thailand and Singapore.

Shahbaz said that at the seminar, commendatory certificates and cash prizes would be given to the government officials, members of civil society, doctors, nurses and paramedical staff who showed outstanding performance during the recent anti-dengue drive.

Special Assistant to Chief Minister on Health Khawaja Salman Rafique; additional chief secretary; secretaries of health, higher education, environment, agriculture, information and schools; and other senior officers of the departments concerned also attended the meeting.