KP assembly members to stage sit-in to express solidarity with Kashmiris

PESHAWAR: The opposition lawmakers in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) assembly on Tuesday slammed the provincial government for ‘uneven’ allocations of funds in the Annual Development Program (ADP), 2018-19 and warned for protests.

The Assembly proceedings resumed after five days’ recess here with Speaker Mushtaq Ahmad Ghani in the chair witnessed uproar by the opposition over ADP. The leader of Opposition, Akram Khan Durrani starting debate on ADP said the government has ignored the opposition lawmakers in development projects. He said the government hasn’t started any mega projects in any of the opposition members’ constituency.

Akram Durrani said the KP government main focus was Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) as the government had sought Rs 20 billion additional loans including Rs17 billion for BRT. He alleged the education activities in KP were adversely affecting 70 out of a total 90 foundation schools in Mansehra had been closed adding the former MD of the said schools had confessed it. Durrani deplored that the concerned ministers were intentionally not attending assembly proceedings to avoid questions of the opposition.

Parliamentary Leader of PMLN, Sardar Muhammad Yousaf said the opposition members were having many expectations from the government with regard to just distribution of funds, but unfortunately, the situation was contrary.

Parliamentary Leader of ANP, Sardar Hussain Babak said that whenever the opposition demanded the release of funds the government made the excuse of past governments’ corruption, adding that during PTI government the people constructed road by themselves and got electricity transformers installed by contributing money. He welcomed the release of former Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif from prison.

Inayatullah Khan of Jamaat-e-Islami alleged the KP government is releasing funds only to government lawmakers. Khan suggested chalking out of a 15-year plan for distributing funds to all districts.

Parliamentary leader of Pakistan Peoples’ Party (PPP), Sher Azam Wazir said people of the province had given the mandate to PTI for resolution of their problems and the government should have to ensure equal discrimination of funds so that everybody could be benefitted from development.

Maulana Lutfur Rehman of Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA), Khushdil Khan Advocate of Awami National Party, Mina Nisar Gul Kakakhel of MMA and Sardar Aurangzeb Nalotha took part in the debate. Later, the House passed “The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Provincial Buildings (management, Control and Allotment) Bill, 2019 with the majority of votes and adopted “The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Land Acquisition (Mines) (Amendment) Bill 2019.”

The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government is ready to sit with opposition members in provincial assembly to address their grievances regarding what they say ‘uneven distribution of development funds’, the Senior Minister Atif Khan told the provincial assembly here Tuesday.

Winding up debate on Annual Development Program (ADP) in the assembly the Minister said unlike past governments in the province, PTI government was ready to sit with the opposition and take them on board on just distribution of development funds.

He refuted the notion of opposition members that KP government was ignoring them in the release of funds, saying that the government had released 30 percents to local leaders at the district level as they better know problems being faced by people in the districts.

Minister for Food Qalandar Lodhi said the Chief Minister Mehmood Khan has asked him to play the role as a bridge among government and opposition benches over the issue of distribution of funds. He said that several schemes were under process across the province, adding that attention was being paid to less privileged areas. He assured release of funds on equality basis.

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