QUETTA: Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan has summoned a cabinet meeting on Monday to review the likely Rs390 billion provincial budget for the upcoming fiscal year 2019-20.
Health, education as well as law and order are the sectors that have been prioritised in the next budget which will be presented in the Balochistan Assembly on Wednesday, June 19, during the budget session.
Provincial Finance Minister Zahoor Ahmed Buledi will present the annual budget. “The people of Balochistan will witness major positive changes in the health sector through government reforms,” Buledi said.
According to sources, the government has decided to allocate Rs24.5 billion for health in line with its vision to provide quality healthcare to the people.
Sources privy to the details said that 900 new vacancies will be announced in the health department while an amount of Rs3.5 billion will be allocated for building medical and response centres on the provincial highways along with a trauma centre.
The provincial government is also considering the recommendation to release Rs6 million for district headquarter hospitals in order to ensure availability of medicines free of charge.
The appointment of 35 paramedics has also been suggested under the provincial budget along with the addition of five personnel with technical expertise to augment the staff of Basic Health Units (BHUs) and Rural Health Clinics (RHCs).
Chief Minister Kamal said all stakeholders were included in the finalisation of the provincial financial budget for the upcoming fiscal year with special attention to equitable distribution of funds across the province.
“For the first time in the history of Balochistan, all the rules and regulations have been followed in letter and spirit with equal funds allocated to provincial constituencies,” the chief minister wrote on micro-blogging website Twitter.
He also reiterated that the budget would be people-friendly and would focus on providing relief to the people of the province. “We have succeeded in including provincial mega projects in the federal Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP). The government is committed to present a colossal budget with full relief for the people of Balochistan."
“PSDP projects will be available on ground because in past the schemes were just inked in books,” the chief minister said.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 16th, 2019.