Project initiated for transparent governance


Shehri-CBE has initiated a project – Promotion of Article 19-A of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan for transparent governance and citizen empowerment – (funded by the Foundation Open Society Institute – Pakistan) to inform the civil society and government stakeholders on what Freedom of Information (FoI) is: its power, how it can be used, what are its benefits and where the present legislation could be strengthened.
A critically important component of this project is the capacity building of relevant government organizations, service providers on the topic of FoI in general and the FoI Ordinance in particular so that they are better equipped to respond appropriately to citizen’s demand for information. In this regard, a ‘training program’ was held where representatives of government agencies belonging to local and provincial governments such as the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC), Planning & Development Department, Government of Sindh, participated.
Farhan Anwar, Member, Shehri-CBE, welcomed the participants and introduced the project – its aims and objectives. He highlighted the active role Shehri-CBE has played in trying to facilitate good governance by advocating transparency in government functions and an informed and pro-active role of the citizenry in seeking protection of their fundamental rights as enshrined in the constitution and legislations of all state institutions.
Naeem Sadiq, the trainer, briefed the participants about the format and contents of the training program. He informed about the FoI legislations that comprise laws guaranteeing access to the data held by the state and their status at the national and provincial levels. He explained about the applicability of the ordinance in terms of which type of state institutions could be asked to share data and what type of information could be accessed. Sadiq then explained in detail the ‘process’ of ‘invoking’ the FoI ordinance – guidelines for making an FoI Application and the ‘five’ steps for obtaining the information and records. He discussed separately the ‘process’ – one, till the filing of the application and two, as to what happens after the application is filed according to the stipulations laid down in the ordinance. The lead trainer thanked the participants for their active participation.
Governor for alternative means to meet energy crisis: Sindh Governor Dr Ishrat- ul- Ebad Khan has called for finding alternative means to help overcome the prevailing energy crisis.
He was speaking at the Governor House here on Thursday at the initiation ceremony of a plant under the auspices of Winergy. The plant at Bin Qasim, Landhi here can generate 200,000 cubic metres of bio gas daily. The Governor was of the view that this was first endeavour of its kind. Sindh Minister, Shoaib Ahmed Bukhari, and international consultant’s S.M. Kazmi and Winergy’s Chief Executive Officer Khurrum Irshad were also present on the occasion. Dr Ebad pointed out that in China bio-gas is being produced from the waste of 200,000 animals while in Karachi there is a capacity of producing bio-gas from the waste of 500,000 animals. The Governor said that through this project quite a quantity of CNG can be obtained.
He also assured every possible assistance from his own side as well as on behalf of the Government of Sindh.
Mehfil-i-Naat tomorrow : A ‘Mehfil-i-Naat’ will be held at Jamia Masjid Arambagh here on June 17 at 10 pm. An announcement here on Friday said that prominent Naat Khawan will take part. An ‘Ijtimai Dua’ will also be held on the occasion, it was further stated.