Decrying imbalance: 7th NFC usurped smaller provinces’ rights, says Sherpao

Says Centre also ignored census despite QWP’s APC

Our Correspondent May 02, 2016
Qaumi Watan Party K-P President Sikandar Hayat Sherpao addressing a press conference at his office. PHOTO: EXPRESS

PESHAWAR: The 7th National Finance Commission Award has been criticised as an attempt to usurp the rights of smaller provinces by the federal government. This was said by Qaumi Watan Party K-P President Sikandar Hayat Sherpao on Monday. He was speaking at a news conference at his office in the city.

Sherpao said the 8th NFC Award would be the first one after the 18th Constitutional Amendment was passed. He added smaller provinces are expecting an increase in their shares.

“It would alienate the smaller provinces, especially Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa which has been badly affected by militancy,” he said.

No headcount

Sherpao also spoke about the all-parties conference that his party convened over delays in conducting the census.

He said they did not receive a positive response from the federal government on the matter.

“This is upsetting because if the provinces do not know about the population, how can the respective governments allocate funds effectively,” the QWP leader said. “In this case, any planning and development strategy would be a waste of funds as well as time.”

Sherpao said census was compulsory and the federal government should pay heed to the demands of the remaining three provinces.

“The federal government should not force [the provincial government] to ask if [K-P is] part of this country or not,” he said. “Such questions have been asked in the past. [The Centre] should give every province its due right.”

Shortage of funds

He added the federal government was not cooperating with K-P on net hydel profit and has not been giving it its due share in the Public Sector Development Programme over the last 15 years.

To questions regarding the shortage and non-utilisation of funds, Sherpao said the rate at which the funds are being put to use has increased and more projects would receive funding soon.

“As far as shortage of funds is concerned, the provincial government had planned [finances] in light of the federal government’s commitment to provide [money],” he said. “The commitment was not fulfilled.”

He maintained the provincial government held meetings with the federal finance minister but he also failed to meet his promise, therefore, K-P has been facing shortage of funds.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 3rd, 2016.


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