Pros and cons: Govt to abolish CADD Ministry thru notification

  • Attached departments, agencies to be transferred to other ministries, secretariats

ISLAMABAD: The government has in principle decided to abolish the Capital Administration and Development Division (CADD) and the process of transfer of its attached departments and organisations is soon to be undertaken by other ministries.

Established in 2011, the existence of the CADD Ministry has been criticised since day one. Seen by many of its critics as a white elephant, the prompt decision by the government to abolish CADD in its second cabinet meeting provides an opportunity to weigh and evaluate the performance of the ministry since its inception.

Although the decision has been made, it is pertinent to mention that the notification is yet to be issued. Furthermore, the organisations and departments – PIMS, Polyclinic, Capital Development Authority and Federal Directorate of Education overseeing schools and colleges of Islamabad – are soon to be transferred to other ministries and secretariats.

The process once completed will abolish the ministry – meaning that CADD Division under the secretary and the secretariat will cease to exist. Under the ministership of Tariq Fazal Chaudhary, a lawmaker from erstwhile NA-49, the issues of rural Islamabad resembled to those of far-flung areas of the country.

Despite spending billions of rupees on development of the rural areas and given thousands of sui gas connections, making roads, providing electricity to the poorest segments of the society, the voters of his constituency refused him in the election 2018, where he lost by a huge margin to PTI candidate Raja Khurram.

During the previous tenure, the government alone spent four billion rupees on education and provided 200 new buses to the schools under the Federal Directorate of Education. The abolition of CADD and absence of dissenting voices are proof that the ministry has disillusioned the people whether they are living in rural areas or urban localities.

Most importantly, a direly needed project worth Rs 40 billion bringing water from Gazi Brotha Barrage aiming to resolve the water woes of the capital for the next 50 years remained shelved throughout the past 15 years. According to officials, the consultation is underway for the procedure to be opted about the transfer of assets and manpower to other departments.

A part of the 18th Amendment, the Capital Administration and Development Division is mainly responsible to execute all such functions being previously performed by the abolished ministries/divisions within the jurisdiction of the federal capital area like health, social welfare, education, rehabilitation of persons with disabilities, population welfare etc.

According to its mandate, the CAAD Ministry is trusted to carry out main functions like executing the functions previously handled by the abolished ministries/divisions (in sectors like education, health, social welfare, special education, tourism etc) within the jurisdiction of the federal capital area. Along with looking after administrative and personnel matters of the various departments and agencies of the devolved ministries placed under the ministry’s administrative control.

The ministry has organised itself into five wings – administration; education; health; planning & development; and social welfare and special education. It is pertinent to mention here that the CADD Ministry employs a whopping 21761 employees, largest chunk being employed by the education sector which employees 15389 personnel.

Talking to Pakistan Today, CADD spokesperson Ateequr Rehman said that the decision taken by the cabinet meeting has been final and consultations were underway to revert the departments back. “Hopefully, soon after the issuance of the notification, the attached departments will be handed over to other ministries and CADD Secretariat will be separated,” he said.