Vital factor: PPP wants OGRA to represent all provinces

Sassui to present amendment bill before Senate.

Qamar Zaman December 21, 2015
Sassui to present amendment bill before Senate. PHOTO: NNI

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) wants the Oil & Gas Regulatory Authority to represent all provinces and aspires to bring the regulator within the purview of the Council of Common Interests.

PPP Senator Sassui Palijo from Sindh is all set to introduce a relevant bill in the upper house of parliament on Monday. The Ogra (Amendment) Bill 2015 seeks further amendment in the Ogra Ordinance 2002.

“The authority should have representation of all the provinces and should be under the CCI,” Sassui told The Express Tribune on Sunday. “The ordinance has never been touched even after the passage of the 18th Constitutional Amendment.”

Referring to constitutional provisions, she said Ogra should be within the CCI’s purview just like the Indus River System Authority and the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority.

Five amendments

Sharing details of the proposed bill that would be introduced on the private members’ day in the Senate on Monday, the senator said she had proposed five amendments in the existing framework.

She stressed on representation of all the provinces in policy-making as being the most important thing. She also proposed that Ogra’s chairperson should be appointed on rotational basis from among the provincial members.

Next, she suggested changes in the criteria of qualification and experience required for the members who would represent their respective provinces.

Sassui said that with the CCI in a supervisory position, the council would help resolve all the issues in case of any disputes.

“The ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz claims of taking steps to strengthen the federation, so the government should not oppose the move,” the PPP leader said in response to a query about the fate of the bill. “Smaller provinces want to see practical steps by the government in line with the commitments made while passing the 18th amendment and with provincial autonomy.”

Published in The Express Tribune, December 21st,  2015.



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