Two ordinances bring back nazims in Karachi, Hyderabad

Published: August 7, 2011

Sindh Governor Ishratul Ebad Khan announcing two new ordinances. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD NOMAN

Sindh Governor Ishratul Ebad Khan announcing two new ordinances. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD NOMAN PPP leader and Sindh  Sindh Governor Ishratul Ebad of the MQM met in Islamabad. PHOTO: EXPRESS
KARACHI / ISLAMABAD: 

The deed has been done. Sindh Governor Ishratul Ebad Khan issued two ordinances on Saturday resulting in the revival of the 2001 local government system in Karachi and Hyderabad as well as the restoration of the previous delimitation of both districts.

The decision, being termed as the ‘first phase’ of an agreement, came following long negotiations between the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, represented by Sindh Governor Ishratul Ebad, and the Pakistan Peoples Party, represented by Senator Babar Awan.

(Read: PPP-MQM: The deal has been done)

Talking to the media at the  Governor House after the talks, the Sindh governor said that the decision to remove all differences between the PPP and MQM had been taken via the ordinances, and reflected the will of President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani and MQM chief Altaf Hussain.

Awan, while talking to the media, said that two ordinances, and not three, as was being initially reported, had been signed.

He gave details of the phases of negotiations that had taken place.

The first phase took place in Islamabad between the governor and Awan, the second took place at the Governor House in Karachi, the third at the Sindh Chief Minister House, and then the last one at the Governor House again, after which the ordinances were signed.

He said that the decisions were in the best interest of strengthening democracy, and stressed that there was no lack of trust between the MQM and PPP, nor was there any deadlock at any stage.

He said that violence in Karachi was hurting Pakistan.

He added that the ordinances were the first phase of an agreement, and that many more decisions would continue to unfold in coming days in the run up to Eid-ul-Fitr.

Awan also said that it was agreed in the negotiations that the Police Order 2002 would not be restored and that it was best that it was done away with.

(Read: The Great Leap Backwards)

He said that it was also agreed that the governor would regain control of the education boards in the province, though there would be no legislation on the matter, but just a verbal agreement.

Awan added that all of the petitions filed in the courts on the matter would be withdrawn.

The MQM and the PPP have been mercurial allies, with the MQM frequently breaking away from the PPP-led coalition for a variety of policy differences. Most analysts, however, agree that the single biggest difference between the two parties is that over elected local governments in Sindh.

The MQM, with its political support base in the urban parts of the province, supports autonomous elected local governments. The party ran the last such government in Sindh between 2005 and 2009, which was widely seen as boosting the MQM’s governing credentials amongst its supporters.

The PPP, meanwhile, fears that the local government system would erode the party’s popularity within its political base in rural Sindh by offering an alternative to PPP-backed aristocratic politicians. It has been hesitant to allow local governments for fearing of losing its place among the electorate in Sindh.

A compromise, however, appears to have been reached on Friday, with the PPP agreeing to allow elected local governments – similar to those introduced by former president Pervez Musharraf – in Sindh’s two largest urban centres, Karachi and Hyderabad, which are also the areas from where MQM draws its deepest base of support.

The remaining 21 districts in Sindh, however, are expected to remain under the bureaucrat-dominated ‘commissionerate’ system that includes several colonial-era laws.

On Saturday morning, Awan and Governor Ebad met at Awan’s house in Islamabad to discuss the details of the agreement under which the MQM has agreed to rejoin the ruling coalition, led by the PPP, after having quit it for the third time. Both men had been given the parameters of an acceptable settlement by their respective parties and were reported to be hammering out a deal.

They met again in Karachi later in the day to continue working on the deal after they had failed to reach a conclusion in Islamabad.

Both men spoke to the media after their meeting in Islamabad and seemed keen to portray willingness by both sides to cooperate with each other.

The governor was also quick to rule out the possibility of a military action in Karachi, saying that the situation should be controlled before the need for such intervention arises.

“Why should we allow conditions in the city to deteriorate to the point where we have to call the army?” asked Ebad rhetorically.

Awan had kind words to say about MQM chief Altaf Hussain and said that the discussions between him and the governor had been conducted in a cordial atmosphere.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 7th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (41)

  • Ali Turk
    Aug 6, 2011 - 6:41PM

    Henry L, Mencken once wrote, “complex problems have simple, easy to understand, wrong answers.”
    How true……

    Recommend

  • Zion
    Aug 6, 2011 - 11:00PM

    What institutions are we hallucinating about?get real – people need basic necessities, security and healthcare. This country is on verge of a civil war, try something out of the box. Try making an example of some really influential people who have hurt the foundation of this country….but then who cares or has the will to do this is a billion dollar question?

    Recommend

  • Tanoli
    Aug 6, 2011 - 11:57PM

    hungry, naked peoples with leaders living better than western countries what a joke what a
    islam

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  • Aug 7, 2011 - 12:12AM

    Congratulations Karachites

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  • zain
    Aug 7, 2011 - 12:17AM

    Good news for karachities ,hyderabadies for come back city and district government..

    Recommend

  • haider.h
    Aug 7, 2011 - 2:13AM

    what a farce.have more than 400 ppl died for this?

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  • Shame on the ppp. Feeling guilty to vote you. Shame on ur governance. May We get rid of you soon as posible..
    Aug 7, 2011 - 3:25AM

    Shame on the ppp. Feeling guilty to vote you. Shame on ur governance. May We get rid of you soon as posible..

    Recommend

  • Hairaan
    Aug 7, 2011 - 5:25AM

    Don’t we have provincial assembly functioning? When will this backdoor diplomacy and ordinance culture end?

    Recommend

  • Aamir
    Aug 7, 2011 - 6:23AM

    If they wanted to be friends again then why so many innocent people were killed, doesn’t make any sense to me.

    Oh people of Pakistan, please please please identify your enemies and do not vote for corrupt, selfish & inept politicians in future, stand up for your rights, otherwise your generations to come will suffer.

    Recommend

  • Asad Khan
    Aug 7, 2011 - 6:29AM

    This is first step towards break-up of Sindh.Its historical betrayal to the people of Sindh !
    Zardari can go to any limit for sake of remaining in power.

    Lets see people of interior Sindh react to this development.

    As a son of the soil, I will never ever vote for Bilawal-Gaddar-Zardari !

    Recommend

  • AdNaN
    Aug 7, 2011 - 7:21AM

    So now will mustafa kamal be back ??????? PLS WE NEED HIM BACK !!!!

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  • amjad
    Aug 7, 2011 - 9:23AM

    Can some one bring peace, normality and good governance to the city and province, now?

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  • Kazmis
    Aug 7, 2011 - 10:11AM

    Some people are happy for the development in which Karachi got some independence, some are worried that Mr. Zardari is doing all this compromise for the sake of his seat. It is also observed that PPP people participated in negotiation (Perhaps dozen) were with gloaming faces in press conference against single person of MQM Governor Ebad. How it happpened? The time will prove in near future that Mr. Zardari is going to become new GRBOCHEV for India & Pakistan, by declaring India-Pakistan as one single country like East & West Germany, through the mechanism of British Government under partition declaration of Indo-Pak in 1947. It was just a partition of a part of commonwealth, reversible by a simple declaration order from the Queen of England. You have high commissioners and not the ambassadors. By doing that there will be NO KASHMIR issue, no Karachi Issue(Karachites may loose their Karachi status and may be considered citizen of those province from their they came from India) no Big military, No WMD etc, and off course no Afghanistan issue in presence of a big India. No one knows what QuaideAzam signed with the British Government like Musharraf signed with USA, and the papers are under safe custody in Biritish Governmen in London.

    Recommend

  • Ray of Hope
    Aug 7, 2011 - 10:56AM

    Nazim Karachi had worked hard and shaped Karachi as a modernized city, but the local government system had given nothing to Karachi in the production work. So, it is better to remove the so-called obsolete Commissionerate system and replace it with the Mayor / Nazim.

    Recommend

  • Scorpio
    Aug 7, 2011 - 12:57PM

    Is this the beginning of the new province of Jinnahpur?

    Recommend

  • Aug 7, 2011 - 1:09PM

    Back to square one

    Recommend

  • Aug 7, 2011 - 1:22PM

    Another version of the Asian Drama unfolds

    Recommend

  • rameed
    Aug 7, 2011 - 2:15PM

    Again, Pakistanis are being taken for a ride by these politicians who thrive merely on rhetoric and who never lose sleep regardless of how many deaths take place in Karachi. After all, they have their own fortressses and havens in Dubai and London where they can always fly to, whenever things get out of whack. Long on words, but short on action, these politicians continue to insult openly the intelligence of thinking Pakistanis. Regardless of whether a commissioner system is implemented or not, Karachi will continue to suffer at the incompetent hands of these same people and parties who now have their eyes set on the general elections. Violence will not stop. It does not matter which system is imposed, it’s the people who man the system that matter.

    Recommend

  • Iftikhar-ur-Rehman
    Aug 7, 2011 - 2:15PM

    This shows how much the parties MQM,PPP or for that matter any party care for the ordinary people!!! They only want benefits for themselves and if the party leaders don’t get what they want they let their party workers killed and then the leaders sit together and decide on the share of the loot and killing stops.

    Recommend

  • parvez
    Aug 7, 2011 - 3:52PM

    In this game of ‘ hard ball ‘ politics Zardari has proved to be a master tactician. Nawaz stands isolated and discredited, the PML(Q) stands neutralised and he has the measure of both the MQM & ANP and speaks the language they understand. The army and the judiciary appear fatigued and demoralised and he knows it. As for the TI of Imran Khan that’s a bridge to cross if the bridge comes in his way. Its only his policies towards the religious hard liners that appears non-existant.

    Recommend

  • Ex Pakistani
    Aug 7, 2011 - 6:51PM

    Great news for Urban Sindh…. Atleast we moved on something that is good! Great work! Took alot of slack from people but guess the end is good!

    Recommend

  • Ex Pakistani
    Aug 7, 2011 - 6:52PM

    @rameed:
    What is so bad in the outcome?

    Recommend

  • Ex Pakistani
    Aug 7, 2011 - 6:54PM

    @Iftikhar-ur-Rehman:
    So the local government introduced by Musharaf didnt work for people? Was it wrong to demand it is reinstated? What are we all expecting? Putting food on the plates? Problems will be solved if a workable system of governance is there and the local bodies system works very effectively we have seen.

    Recommend

  • Reasonlight
    Aug 7, 2011 - 8:45PM

    @Tanoli: I will not object to their standard of living. They should deliver. If they are corrupt, they cannot deliver.

    Recommend

  • Reasonlight
    Aug 7, 2011 - 8:52PM

    @Iftikhar-ur-Rehman: Not exactly. I think the PPP is only interested in the support from MQM and sincere in giving them their share.

    People are the ultimate sufferers.

    Recommend

  • rameed
    Aug 7, 2011 - 9:04PM

    @ Ex Paksitani
    I admire your optimism. However, this should not blind you to the possibility that the proposed administrative measures could just be mere cosmetics. The outcome is predictable. The measures will be opposed by other interested parties. Violence on ethnic and political lines will continue. People shouldn’t be easily swayed by lofty rhetoric and seemingly strong pronouncements emerging from meetings here and there, especially those parleys that consume public funds. These meetings are all for public consumption, designed to show that the government is doing something, which are not necessarily useful. The pattern has been established a long time ago. The government has been reactive, instead of pro-active, awaiting for a crisis to emerge first then call for a judicial commission or an investigative committee, conduct a series of meetings between officials, and finally issue some motherhood, but poorly-worded statements that everything would be alright. In short, No Action, Talk Only, plus photo-ops, of course.

    Recommend

  • Dan
    Aug 7, 2011 - 9:35PM

    Disgusting democracy, better if we have a “good” dictator.

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  • Ashar
    Aug 7, 2011 - 10:04PM

    A wonderful decision and it will really bring peace and prosperity in the region. PPP should have not implemented commissionerate system to begin with as this system is against the very basics of democracy. We all have seen the developments and the good works done by Mustafa Kamal under Local governement. We need a system which is good for people. PPP has made a good decision regarding Local governement but I think it should be all over Sind.

    Recommend

  • Khalil
    Aug 7, 2011 - 10:18PM

    Current PPP decision to divide Sindh in two administrative zones is the biggest conspiracy against Sindh and Sindhis and whoever is part of this systematic conspiracy,Sindhis will reject them and whole nation will launch an effective movement to counter their plans.Sindh fought against One Unit and succeeded. Our so called shameless politicians supported one unit.Now it’s testing time once again to repeat the same struggle with unity, persistence and commitment to foil all ill designs of Establishment,MQM and PPP against Sindh and Sindhis.

    Sindhis will use their sufi and peace political means to foil the plans of Sindh’s division inshAllah.Recommend

  • Shariff
    Aug 7, 2011 - 11:41PM

    I hope this development brings peace to my beloved city

    Recommend

  • Mirza
    Aug 7, 2011 - 11:55PM

    @Dan:
    You have had “great Muslim” dictators like Zia, Yehya and others. What has been achieved? If the people and the fabric of the society are corrupt, then leaders would only represent the society in general. If there are no good people, where would you bring “good” dictators from? Who would be working with them angles or aliens? Most if not all the people and parties who were working with Mush are now in the PPP coalition govt, so much for their loyalties and character! We can continue and pray for a miracle and somebody from the top comes in with totally clean team from the heavens or take the responsibility and cleanup our acts? The choice is ours, we have been praying five times a day but God helps those who help themselves.
    Be that as it may, under the current circumstances there are not many options except all the elected parties work together to stop the killing and give peace a chance. It is the first step that the citizens feel safe. There is no heavenly option and let us get real and practical.
    Thanks and regards,
    Mirza

    Recommend

  • Copper
    Aug 8, 2011 - 12:09AM

    @Dan:
    We already tried 3 times. No more please!

    Recommend

  • PS
    Aug 8, 2011 - 12:49AM

    Why not? Should work out better for the economic development as a whole. Positive step indeed. Every one can participate in the economic development.

    Recommend

  • Rightly so
    Aug 8, 2011 - 12:59AM

    Karachi and Hyderabad should have been a seperate province long ago. . . .

    Recommend

  • Scooby
    Aug 8, 2011 - 1:15AM

    @Kazmis
    The step taken will be economically beneficial for all.Recommend

  • Hairaan
    Aug 8, 2011 - 1:25AM

    Why dont we see famous Farooq Sattar in the picture. Sounds fishy em.

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  • Aug 8, 2011 - 9:22AM

    Another NRO .But this time with the blessings of Britain . Then we cry for our soreignity .
    About Farooq Sattar . Each time he opens his mouth he lies

    Recommend

  • sameer
    Aug 8, 2011 - 10:19AM

    those who are raising the question like”aik sooba doo nizam” if in a country called Pakistan we have don’t have any uniform legal system placed the recent example is “nizam-e-adal” in KPK so why not have dual local bodies system in province Sindh

    Recommend

  • Karachi Citizen
    Aug 8, 2011 - 10:57AM

    Smart game played by Mr.Zardari, he completley ruined the image of MQM, people will no more trust the BAYANAT of MQM.

    Recommend

  • Ex Pakistani
    Aug 8, 2011 - 1:16PM

    @rameed:
    I dont have a reason to doubt LG will be good for Karachi. Our experience has been quite good. The way previous administration of Karachi worked it showed how effective grass root governance be.

    Recommend

  • Iftikhar-ur-Rehman
    Aug 8, 2011 - 8:35PM

    @Ex Pakistani:
    I am not against the local govt. Infact I feel that is the right way to run a city and Mustapha Kamal worked wonders in Karachi. My only question is why were so many innocent people killed for this type or any other type of Govt.???? This could have been decided peacefully also.I was in Karachi during this ruthless killings were happening and was unable to fathom any reason except that MQM leadership wanted Local Govt.System whereas PPP had issued notification for Commiserate type of Govt. and who got killed???? JUST THE INNOCENT PEOPLE who were not even members of any party and they didn’t even knew why were they being killed???? Is that good? Is that the way to settle or make deals ? Party leadership(ALL POLITICAL PARTIES OF KARACHI) should care for their members instead of mercilessly killing innocent people.

    Recommend

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