—Imran Khan urges cabinet ministers and provincial secretaries to make efforts against corruption, promote austerity in govt depts
—Asks bureaucrats to prioritise merit, transparency and service delivery
LAHORE: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday stressed the need for eliminating corruption and promoting austerity within Punjab government departments, as he urged newly-inducted cabinet ministers and provincial bureaucrats to try and make Punjab a trendsetter for other provinces.
Chairing a meeting of the Punjab cabinet ministers, PM Khan felicitated them on assuming their portfolios and said that huge responsibilities lie on their shoulder as Punjab is the biggest province of the country in terms of population.
Earlier, Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar warmly welcomed Prime Minister Imran Khan on behalf of the provincial cabinet and reaffirmed the commitment to implement the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) reforms and development agenda of ‘Naya Pakistan’.
Discussing various reforms with the cabinet members, the prime minister said that elimination of corrupt practices is one of the biggest challenges in Punjab and stressed for eliminating corruption.
PM Khan also expressed serious concern over land grabbing and encroachments in the province in general and Lahore in particular, and directed that the mafias and big groups who have been involved in encroachments and land grabbing must be taken to task.
He directed the chief minister to immediately launch an anti-encroachment drive and take action against land grabbers and assured his full support to the provincial government in this regard.
Prime Minister Imran Khan further emphasised upon the need of austerity and simplicity and said that the cabinet members should set the example while remaining at the forefront to remove extravagance on taxpayers’ monies at all levels.
“We must invest on human development while rationalising our expenditures simultaneously with austerity and simplicity because Pakistan has the lowest Human Development Index in the region,” stressed the prime minister.
Khan urged the provincial cabinet to work tirelessly for implementation of 100-days agenda of the present government to bring a visible change in the socio-economic spheres of our people’s lives, adding that he would be frequently visiting the province and will remain at the forefront to oversee it.
The cabinet members also shared their ideas and proposals concerning their departments with the prime minister.
Prime Minister Imran Khan also held a meeting with provincial secretaries of Punjab at CM Secretariat in Lahore. CM Buzdar was also present during the meeting.
The prime minister highlighted the role of bureaucracy in steering the country out of various challenges that the country faced today, observing that difficult circumstances require tough decisions.
“The reforms agenda of the present government requires the wholehearted commitment of the bureaucracy coupled with performance to translate the vision into reality,” the premier stated.
“Your performance would be the only consideration for the present government. We will provide you opportunity and will not interfere in the functional domain, as we demonstrated in KP, which produced unprecedented outcomes,” asserted the prime minister.
Referring to the era of the 60s, PM Khan said that we expect civil servants to manifest the same dedication, commitment and professionalism. He stressed upon the need for improving governance, service delivery, transparency and promoting merit at all levels in order to capitalise the immense potential of the country.
PM Khan earlier held a meeting with Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar upon arrival at CM Secretariat. He also planted a sapling upon arrival at CM Secretariat in Lahore.
PM Khan has focused himself on wiping out corruption and emphasising on austerity in the government departments. He also promised reforms in an ambitious but doable 100-day agenda.
On Thursday, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that there will be a visible change in the country in terms of good governance as he urged media for constructive criticism after his government came under fire for multiple controversies as soon as it came into power.
Imran had stressed on across-the-board accountability saying that it is imperative for progress.
On his government’s austerity campaign, PM Khan said that he will not waste national resources on foreign visits like the former rulers of the country.