Conference: Politicians demand changes, clarity in proposed reforms

Published: March 9, 2017

PESHAWAR: Political leaders have begun lobbying for changes in articles 246 and 247 of the Constitution and delegating the powers of the president and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa governor to the elected representatives of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata).

Claiming the reforms were riddled with confusion, they called upon the government to clear the air about the reforms and threatened to reject Fata’s status as that of the provincially administered tribal areas.

The conference was arranged by Pakhtunkhwa Ulasi Tehreek (PUT) which was attended by Awami National Party (ANP) senior leader Advocate Abdul Latif Afridi, Jamaat-e-Islami Fata Amir Zakar Shah, PUT Convener Dr Said Alam Mehsud, PTI’s Iqbal Afridi, Fata Political Alliance president Sardar Khan and Fata Lawyers Forum president, besides others.

Afridi rejected the proposed status of Fata as provincially administered tribal areas, adding that articles 246 and 247 had not been changed in the proposed Fata reforms.

Mehsud, on the other hand, stated that the government was not sincere about introducing true reforms in the tribal areas.

PTI’s Iqbal Afridi alleged that the political administration and influential tribal chiefs were not in favour of the merger which is why the process was being delayed.

Speakers highlighted issues in the proposed Fata reforms and demanded that confusion be immediately cleared. At the same time they identified lacuna which, they thought, were obstructing the merger of Fata with K-P.

They also expressed concerns over the Riwaj Act and urged the government to amend the act besides speeding up the process of the Fata merger with K-P.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 9th, 2017.

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