ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Water Resources Faisal Vawda on Wednesday said that appointment of an additional member from Sindh to the Indus River System Authority (Irsa) was not covered under the IRSA Act, 1992 as each the province could only nominate one member.
He said that the Chief Executive Order of 2000, granting Sindh the favour of nominating federal member in addition to the one already appointed by it, was unauthorised and illegal as the Irsa Act was not accordingly amended in the light of Martial Law era executive order.
“The order has already been suspended by the Supreme Court of Pakistan, which allowed the federal government to nominate its own member on Irsa to ensure neutrality and credibility of the regulatory authority,” said a press release issued here on Wednesday.
Taking strong exception of the statement of the Sindh chief minister on the issue of nomination of one additional member to Irsa, the minister maintained that the Punjab had strong reservations to the presence of two members from Sindh at Irsa, while none represented the Federation.
Vawda said that the prime minister had already considered the request of the Sindh chief minister on the issue and directed him to fill the post of federal member of Irsa strictly in line with the stipulation of the Irsa Act. The ministry, he added, had started the process of nomination as per law.
The minister said that he was open to lawful suggestions but not for dictation. He added that both the Irsa Act and the judgment of the Supreme Court clearly empowered the federal government in this regard and would accordingly exercise its legal authority.
He also expressed his resolve that the Prime Minister’s Office and the ministry of water resources would always uphold the law and abide by the acts of the parliament instead of political expediency.