At least 43 grade-IV employees on the payroll of Tehsil Municipal Administration (TMA) are busy working at the residences of current and former government officials in Mardan.
These Mardan TMA employees have been working at the residence of Mardan commissioner, deputy commissioner, assistant commissioner and extra assistant commissioner and their offices. They are also deployed at the chief secretary house, former chief minister house, former tehsil nazim house, former K-P Assembly deputy speaker, residence of Public Service Commission Chairperson, Mardan chief minister complaint cell, Mardan Press Club, Mardan investigation office and district government.
The information regarding the whereabouts of these TMA workers which includes sanitary workers, baildar (diggers), naib qasid (peons) and malia (gardeners) was provided by Mardan TMA to K-P Right to Information Commissioner via an application filed under the RTI act.
The TMA asked 43 employees working elsewhere to report to their respective sections and serve the authority solely but a majority of them are still missing.
Naeem Khan, a resident of the district, submitted an application to Mardan TMA under the K-P RTI Act 2013, following which TMA provided a list of its employees who were getting salaries from TMA but working for said officials and former dignitaries. At least three sanitary workers and a baildar have been serving at former K-P chief minister’s house; six staffers have been working at the residence and office of the Mardan DC; three staffers have been working at the Mardan assistant commissioner’s office; and one for the Batkhela assistant commissioner.
The list provided by TMA—a copy of which is available with The Express Tribune—shows two workers have been serving Mardan Press Club, two at the house of Public Service Commission chairperson, one each serving at the houses of former deputy speaker of K-P Assembly and a former tehsil nazim of Mardan.
“Ideally they should be serving the municipal authority but they have been working for influential and powerful people so no one tried to ask them to report to their own sections,” said a senior government official, requesting anonymity.
“I noticed garbage in the vicinity of my house and when I realised sanitary workers were not doing their job, I thought I should ask about their absence,” Naeem told The Express Tribune as he explained what made him look into the matter.
“A former tehsil nazim for MMA [Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal] and a deputy speaker are still using TMA staff,” he said.
When asked why the Mardan TMA failed to take action against its employees, Mardan tehsil nazim Ayub Khan told The Express Tribune the staffers have been called back. He said they became part of the Mardan TMA workforce two months ago.
According to Ayub, TMA has 583 sanitary workers and he claimed all of them have become regular employees.
Ayub said the information provided by TMA was “incorrect,” but TMA superintendent Fazle Akbar, during a hearing at the RTI commission, said only 10% of the missing staffers have reported back and the rest are still missing.
The tehsil nazim also said some of the workers do not do their jobs properly and a list of such workers will be formulated and given to Water and Sanitation Service Mardan (WSSM) which will be started in the district soon.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 30th, 2016.