Representing the people: MQM wants increased local govt powers

Published: January 12, 2016
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Party lawmakers submit bill demanding solid waste management powers for LG representatives . PHOTO: ONLINE

Party lawmakers submit bill demanding solid waste management powers for LG representatives . PHOTO: ONLINE

KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) parliamentarians submitted a private bill in the Sindh Assembly on Monday demanding that the powers of the solid waste management board be handed over to the representatives of the local government instead of the Sindh chief minister.

MPAs Moin Aamir Pirzada, Nishat Zia and Mehmood Abdul Razzaque submitted The Sindh Solid Waste Management Board Act (Amendment) Bill 2016 to the secretary of the provincial assembly.

Parliamentarian Nishat Zia told The Express Tribune that they have demanded amendments in the bill so that the powers of the solid waste management board are given to the elected mayor of the metropolitan and DMC chairpersons of all district municipal corporations of Sindh.

“We want to empower the local government and give them back their power so they can work for the people,” he explained. In 2015, the powers of the board were given to the Sindh chief minister, Zia said.

Meanwhile, the MQM has suggested that the word ‘Sindh chief minister’ or his nominee be substituted with the mayors of metropolitan corporations, chairperson of a district municipal corporation, chairperson of municipal committees and town committees, whoever is the elected representative.

Last month, the party submitted a bill seeking to appoint the city mayor the head of the Karachi Water and Sewage Board. According to Zia, the party plans to submit more bills and said that the Sindh Building Control Authority and other authorities should all be under control of the local government.

Provincial assembly meeting

MQM parliamentarians held a meeting at the Sindh Assembly, where the leader of the opposition, Khawaja Izharul Hassan, demanded an immediate assembly session to discuss the delays in the formation of the local government bodies.

Speaking about the grand alliance of opposition parties against the Sindh government, Hassan told The Express Tribune that the MQM has its doors open for all those parties that are serious about the issues and development of urban areas.

“We respect all political parties having political mandate. However, the alliance didn’t discuss development work in cities and urban areas,” he said. Hassan said that the alliance should clearly express their mandate if it is against the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) or has been formed for the welfare of the people of Sindh.

“MQM will not be part of any conspiracies. However, we are willing to hold discussions with those who are genuinely interested in solving the issues of the people,” Hassan clarified.

PPP

Lashing out at the PPP, the party’s convener, Nadeem Nusrat, said that through their peaceful protests the MQM will expose the PPP’s unconstitutional actions. “The PPP-led government is making baseless cases against the mayor nominee and other leaders of the MQM,” accused Nusrat in a press statement. He also alleged that the PPP was conspiring to convert the MQM’s majority in districts West and South to a minority.

“The PPP is on a mission to disrupt the areas from which the MQM won and make the lives of the people there miserable,” claimed Nusrat.

The MQM had announced on Sunday that it will protest in the next 48 hours. According to party spokesperson Aminul Haque, the MQM is against the policies of the PPP-led government and election commission for not notifying and holding elections of the mayor and deputy mayor and delaying the oath taking ceremony of the elected representatives. According to him, the protest will be held outside the election commission office.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 12th, 2016.

 

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