KARACHI / HYDERABAD: Local Government Minister Saeed Ghani has criticised Prime Minister Imran Khan’s recent meeting with the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) chairperson. “The released photographs [of the meeting] leave the impression as if a subordinate officer is sitting with the PM.”
He said NAB’s investigation against Imran using Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government’s helicopter is yet to conclude. “The NAB chairperson is holding a crucial office. This meeting shouldn’t have happened.” He said the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) is closely monitoring NAB’s investigations concerning Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.
He further said that if Imran preferred some other local government systems other than the one existing in Sindh, then PTI should first introduce it in Punjab and KP.
Commenting on the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan’s complaint about lack of authority of the local government bodies, Ghani said that their responsibility is to maintain cleanliness but they even fail to fulfill that obligation. “Making lack of authority an excuse isn’t a justification for leaving cities unclean.”
“The officers and staff will keep complaining that I am paying surprise visits. Today no one was expecting that I will visit Hyderabad,” he said, adding that he has been monitoring complaints of the citizens against the working of local bodies through social media.
The minister said he has directed the deputy commissioner and managing director of Water and Sanitation Agency to ensure the staff’s attendance. “The situation of attendance is not satisfactory. If it doesn’t improve, I will take action against the departments’ heads.”
He said that during his visit to Phuleli Canal he noticed the canal’s water entering the settled areas because of the rising water level. He assured the local people that he will ask the irrigation authorities to reinforce the canal levees to address the problem.
Ghani said that he has sought complete details from the Sindh Building Control Authority of encroachment over government land in Hyderabad.
He acknowledged that the municipal sewage water is being released into the canal which is a health hazard for the people.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 1st, 2018.