Legislators term statutory report waste of resources

A statutory report on the implementation of the Principles of Policy in relation to the affairs of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa presented to the provincial assembly on Wednesday drew fire both from the opposition and treasury benches. MPAs Khushdil Khan and Saqibullah Khan Chamkani of the ruling National Awami Party fired the opening salvos, terming the annual report wastage of time and resources and against the spirit of the Constitution. They said the report lacked substance and relevance and suggested that the house should not approve “such a superficial document”. Members from both sides supported their call. The report on the observance and implementation of the Principles of Policy in relation to the affairs of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province for the year 2009 was tabled in the assembly for approval on December 6. The establishment and administration department has compiled the annual report, which contains principles of policy laid down under Article 29 of the Constitution being followed and implemented by various organs of the state. Initiating debate on the 165-page report in the assembly on Wednesday, Mr Chamkani said that the report was supposed to set guidelines for government department and it should be precise. But the document tabled in the house had no substance, he added. “This is just cut and paste and every year the same material is reproduced,” he said. Quoting page-8 of the report related with communication and works department, the lawmaker said that it had been mentioned that efforts were being made under Article 31(1) of the Constitution to motivate the officers/officials to adhere to the teachings of Islam. “In this regard the break for Zuhar prayer is regularly observed. Employees are encouraged to perform Haj and ex-Pakistan leave for such cases is sanctioned without any delay.” Moreover it said senior officers had been summoned many times in conference to abide by the teaching of Islam such as performance of duties honestly, simple living and avoiding wastage of time and material.

Mr Chamkani said that the report should stress on checking corruption in government departments and regular performance of duty by the officials instead of dilating upon the performance of Haj by the government servants. He said that irrelevant material had been included in the report. More interestingly the report says that transport department has introduced a bus service for women in Peshawar district, but the fact is that the service was closed before it could take off in 2008. Deputy Speaker Khushdil Khan said that substance of the report was repugnant to the Constitution. He urged the house not to approve the document. He said that the department concerned was wasting money on the report and it did not serve any purpose. “I request this august house to return the report to the department concerned,” the deputy speaker said, adding that government should publish concise report rather than reproducing false statements. He said that government should take step to curb corruption, nepotism and commissions in contracts. Speaker Karamatullah Khan Chagharmatti, who was presiding over the proceedings, directed Javed Abbasi, chairman standing committee on the administration department, to take notice of the report and discuss it with the department concerned. He said that for the first time the report was formally discussed in the assembly. – Dawn