Incomplete projects: Senate panel seeks Rs500m for roads

Senators urge NHA to complete 80 per cent of roads by June this year.


Peer Muhammad April 10, 2011

ISLAMABAD:


The Senate’s standing committee on communication has asked the finance ministry to release development funds for completing under-construction highways in Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.


In a meeting on Saturday, the committee told the ministry to provide Rs500 million to the National Highway Authority (NHA).

When a finance ministry official told committee members that Rs500 million had already been provided to the NHA to be distributed equally between Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, senators from both the provinces said the money was insufficient and called for Rs500 million more.

The committee said that Rs250 million should be released for Balochistan by April 11 and an equal amount be given to Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa by the first week of May from the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP).

Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa will utilise the money for construction of the Hasanabad-Mansehra road, work on which is being undertaken with the assistance of the Asian Development Bank.

Requesting the committee for assistance, an NHA official complained that the Federal Works Organisation (FWO) was not working despite having received funds for construction of highways in Balochistan.

The committee later summoned FWO officials, asking them to appear in the next meeting.

The NHA chairperson said that Khuzdar region’s General Manager Muneer Ahmed Memon was involved in corruption, but committee members and its chairperson remained silent despite Memon’s presence at the meeting. The committee told the NHA chairperson to execute all projects without fearing or favouring any influential person.

Senator Salahuddin Dogar sought that the NHA should recruit lower staff on recommendations of senators.



Published in The Express Tribune, April 10th, 2011.

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