KP-FATA merger needs more focus: CM Khattak




Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervez Khattak hinted at an increase in salary package for the officers of the province.

He wanted increase in the salary of the officers so that they could deliver and contribute to the system and institutions for the benefit of the people. He said he successfully fought for the provincial rights with the federal government and succeeded. ‘If the federal government did not create any obstacle, he would attract maximum foreign investment in the province adding that he was for the merger of FATA into Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He said that only a uniform education system could narrow the yawning gap between the rich and poor.

These remarks he made while addressing the participants of 106 Management Course at Chief Minister Secretariat Peshawar. Chief Secretary Abid Saeed, ACS Azam Khan, Secretary Home Shakeel Qadir and Secretary P&D also attended.

The chief minister said his government eliminated political interference in the public sector institutions, gave transparent governance, discouraged corruption and ensured judicious distribution of resources in the province. His government he added would increase the salary package of the bureaucracy so that they could deliver to the maximum.

The CM said that the system of governance brought about by his government was taken well by the people and hoped that on the basis of his government performance, PTI would stage a comeback. He said that education, health, good governance, speedy justice and reformed patwar system were his government’s mega projects.

He said his government succeeded in fighting for the provincial rights that increased the caped Rs 6 billion to Rs.18 billion annually and convinced the federal government to pay its dues of net hydel profit. The federal government has already scheduled the payment of Rs 100 billion to the province, he added. He said that he also got the surplus natural gas approved for the province which would be used for producing electricity and would be provided to three industrial zones in Hattar, Rashakai and DI Khan.

Pervez Khattak on the CPEC said that the province was initially kept in dark but when he agitated against it, the PM convened an All Parties Conference and agreed to the western route to be part of CPEC. He said that he then kept on raising voice for it at all forums and he single-handedly made the western route a part of CPEC. His government was holding a road show in Beijing on 16th and 17th of this month on 100 viable projects. He wanted investment and would never go for loans for such projects which were not viable and could become a burden on the resources of province and country.

The CM expressed in categorical term the merger of FATA into Khyber Pakhtunkhwa adding that the tribal were accustomed to the laws of the country. The only thing to do was the extension of existing laws and system of governance including policing and local government system. He was against any experimentation in FATA adding that the officers of the province posted out there were delivering. He said he had recommended representation to the FATA in the provincial assembly and added that the federal government agreed to it but under the power of governor and the MNAs were to launch developmental schemes.

He objected to the whole scheme of things and in the previous apex committee, the army chief promised to talk to the prime minister on this. He said that under the federal government 5-year plan of mainstreaming, the FATA would get representation but its members would not have the power to make any legislation that would create further complications.

Pervez Khattak said that he had a plan for uniform education system to bridge the gap between the rich and poor. Education could make a difference. He wanted mainstreaming even the religious seminaries so that all in the society should have an even playing field for their future. It was unfortunate that his tenacity was doubted. He said that his government’s record legislation made a difference ensuring good governance and eliminating corrupt practices adding that his government reformed the police system that become a professional force and regained the lost trust of the people. He said his government made decision making and recruitment on merit. His efforts were resisted by the forces of status quo but he kept on moving on the reform agenda under the definite aim to get the poor rid of the exploitative system. He wanted a system having an inbuilt mechanism for the resolution of people problems specially the poor should not look to influential for their help, he concluded.