Government repeals Sindh local government act, MQM protests

Published: February 21, 2013
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File photo of the Sindh Assembly. PHOTO: ONLINE/FILE

File photo of the Sindh Assembly. PHOTO: ONLINE/FILE

KARACHI: Sindh Law Minister Ayaz Soomro announced on Thursday that the government was withdrawing the Sindh Peoples Local Government Act 2012 (SPLGA) during a Sindh Assembly proceeding , Express News reported .

The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) members staged an in-house protest after the law minister made the announcement.

“If the SPLGA 2012 was meant to bring prosperity to the people of Sindh at that time [when the government passed it], then why is it not prosperous now?” MQM leader Faisal Sabzwari questioned while speaking to the media.

The SPLGA, which was passed by the Sindh Assembly on October 1, 2012, had been a major source of contention between the PPP-led coalition government and various nationalist groups in Sindh.

The law had envisaged six powerful metropolitan corporations in the province.
It was opposed by Sindhi leaders who called it a “dual system” which would create greater ethnic divides in Sindh. It was feared that the law would allow the mayors of the two cities to be given the same powers enjoyed by a chief minister.

The Pakistan Muslim League-Functional (PML-F) and Awami National Party and the National Peoples Party (NPP) left the coalition after the ordinance was first passed.

The 1979 Local Government Ordinance law will now come into effect.

The SPLGA was passed by the Sindh Assembly last year and was vehemently opposed by nationalist parties.

The ordinance was prepared after strong negotiations between Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and the MQM.

Timeline

July 9 , 2011: Acting Governor Khuhro, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro restored the local government ordinance 1979 by repealing SLGO 2001 following a political row between PPP and MQM on Dr Mirza’s statements.

August 6,   2011: Sindh Governor Dr Ishratul Ebad Khan promulgated an ordinance restoring SLGO 2001 in Karachi and Hyderabad by keeping SLGO 1979 along with commissionerate system intact in other districts of Sindh.

August 8, 2011: Governor restored the SLGO 2001 in entire Sindh following criticism that it was an effort to divide Sindh.

November 4,  2011: The Sindh Local Government Ordinance (SLGO) 2001 issued (for 90 days) by Governor Sindh on November 4 lapsed because both the coalition partners PPP and MQM failed to evolve consensus and bring the ordinance in Sindh Assembly. Automatically, the 1979 system was restored.

Sept 7, 2012:  Governor Sindh signed “Sindh Local Government Ordinance 2012”.

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Reader Comments (35)

  • Commentor
    Feb 21, 2013 - 2:28PM

    great piece of game of politics, now when general elections are near, both parties regain their votes back, which they lost in 5 years

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  • Maher
    Feb 21, 2013 - 2:33PM

    Great play PPP, now just before 2 weeks remaining for assembly desolation you played MQM on front foot.

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  • Rational
    Feb 21, 2013 - 2:49PM

    Confused people !!!

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  • Feb 21, 2013 - 2:59PM

    Stupidity at its best. Now the 1979 system introduced by a dictator becomes law of the state. Not only the British ( who first introduce the system in 1800 ) themselves abandoned the commissionaire system but most of the Commonwealth nations followed the same. All over the world , city governments are the ultimate hub of power of any local administration . Most of the parties against the local government haven’t read it , but just for the sake of arguments and against the urban population. they are fooling the sindh population by referring it as a precursor of division, which is not true. A really sad day for sindh .

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  • CK
    Feb 21, 2013 - 3:00PM

    Arm twisting moves. Tobe honest this law was only introduced to appease one party and managed to upset all other parties of Sindh.

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  • fari, Mississauga
    Feb 21, 2013 - 3:00PM

    And hide and seek game goes on

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  • TR
    Feb 21, 2013 - 3:03PM

    A very blatant show of political revenge by the PPP. Valid point by Faisal Sabzwari. If the PPP passed it last year claiming that it was for people’s benefit, how did it suddenly become a bad thing? In any case, the PPP was never going to get those polls held; it never happened in spite of a passage of over 6 months.

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  • Aristo
    Feb 21, 2013 - 3:23PM

    Moving back into the Stone Age at the speed of light.

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  • Feb 21, 2013 - 3:30PM

    doesn’t matter, the killing and corruption won’t stop.

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  • H. Khan
    Feb 21, 2013 - 3:37PM

    Election preparation drama at it’s worse.
    how long will these MPs keep on fooling the citizens?

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  • Feb 21, 2013 - 3:40PM

    @TR:
    You know tha taste of fruit only after tasting it. And it proved to be bitter, an so thrown out to the garbage bin.

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  • farah Zaidi
    Feb 21, 2013 - 3:53PM

    Great and well done PPP. It is a good lesson for poor mqm which always played with the life of people. tit for tat !

    Always cry over split milk

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  • Sumo
    Feb 21, 2013 - 4:08PM

    Americans could not bomb us to stone age,… so they bought democracy to do the dirty work.

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  • Omer
    Feb 21, 2013 - 4:12PM

    Get rid of quota system if you want to end the divide with in sindh.

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  • Omer
    Feb 21, 2013 - 4:15PM

    @Beatle:
    It was never tasted as a matter of fact.

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  • AB
    Feb 21, 2013 - 4:17PM

    I think a deal between PML-F and PPP is on cards ?

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  • sameer
    Feb 21, 2013 - 4:33PM

    now functional league join PPP government

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  • Nasir Mahmood
    Feb 21, 2013 - 4:51PM

    Politics at its worse. May Allah bless Pakistan.

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  • Khan Jr
    Feb 21, 2013 - 5:04PM

    PPP tries to woo the Sindh vote and MQM disassociates itself from a “corrupt wadera” government just in time for the elections.
    What a stage- managed play!Recommend

  • F Khan
    Feb 21, 2013 - 5:51PM

    So this is the politics of reconsiliation what we were hearing day in and day out for the last 5 years?

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  • S.R.H. Hashmi
    Feb 21, 2013 - 6:06PM

    Local govrnment system is regarded as the foundation of democracy because it not only takes demcracy to grass-roots level but also serves as a training ground for future leaders. We witnessed some wonderful work done in Karachi under the able leadership of City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal, and he is now a Senator.

    While the LG system was in force, the way the local government officials came out and tirelessly handled rain and other emergencies, one got reassured that there are people looking after the city as compared to the position now when it appears to have been abandoned.

    However, our democratic government did away with the prevailing local government system, with the main objection being that it was introduced by a dictator, while choosing to give two very important portfolios of Finance and Foreign Affairs to people associated with the dictator.

    After many long sessions with Mutahidda Qaudmi Movement leaders, Peoples Party finally came up with Sind Peoples Local Government Act 2012, but by the time it finally got approved, it was too late to hold local government elections because of fast-approaching general elections. So the SPLGA just sat pretty in the books, without servicing any useful purpose. The only activity it gave rise to were protest by nationalist parties having insignificant representation in the assembly, who claimed the ordinance was an attempt to divide Sindh, but Peoples Party defended it strongly, insisting it did nothing of the kind.

    And now we hear Peoples Party has adopted a bill to withdraw SPLGA 2012 and to re-introduce local government Act of 1979

    Just shows what sort of productive activities our legislators spend their time on.

    No wonder, the province and the country are in a mess, and so are we.

    Karachi
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  • Ali
    Feb 21, 2013 - 6:12PM

    bills are passed everydayRecommend

  • mystreeman
    Feb 21, 2013 - 6:55PM

    Beginning of the end of undvided Sindh.

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  • Iftikhar Khan
    Feb 21, 2013 - 7:02PM

    It appears that people themselves don’t want to progress. Very sad.

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  • ATT AU REHMAN
    Feb 21, 2013 - 7:03PM

    its a political decision but n favour of karachi and hyder abad citizine

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  • habib rehman
    Feb 21, 2013 - 9:06PM

    it is veery good heppen and it is succefully of nationlist , peer sain and all who love sindh
    it may be mqm want propose in next gov becouse no one party can’t make goverment alone next election

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  • Mehran
    Feb 21, 2013 - 10:36PM

    This is a historic day, one notorious SPLG system finally collapsed due to democratic resistance by people of Sindh. A majority of Sindhi people opposed vehemently the SPLG2012 because it was not formulated for them but to appease one political party to another. It was a simply bargain chip between two political parties. Sindh is not against LG system and she needs a LG system which brings Urban and Rural Sindhis together, a just system which ensures fairness, justice and unity, not division and hate.

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  • Parvez
    Feb 21, 2013 - 11:01PM

    ……so this Ordinance really has nothing to do with the peoples welfare.
    Democracy by the few, for the few in the name of the many……………is not democracy.

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  • Aftab Kenneth Wilson
    Feb 22, 2013 - 1:30AM

    In fact ditching PPP at the 11th hour by MQM must have provoked PPP to take this step. Elections are nearing so this will help PPP, ANP and nationalist parties to get some more seats to form the next government without falling prey to MQM tactics.

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  • navaid
    Feb 22, 2013 - 1:32AM

    This is just the opening the MQM and the Mohajir nationalists need for the start of the Mohajir separation either through a separate province by dividing Sindh, or through the right to self-determination at the UN.

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  • Saima
    Feb 22, 2013 - 1:33AM

    This is a clear victory for MQM, as it will now pave the way for a a separate Mohajir province.

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  • True_Pakistani
    Feb 22, 2013 - 2:38AM

    @Mehran
    And quota system is the system which will do it.
    Shame on people who are not criticizing the quota system instead just celebrating the repeal of SPLGO 2012.

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  • londonistani
    Feb 22, 2013 - 2:46AM

    sindhis are their biggest enemies……. and then they would moan about not having a metro bus like the one in lahore.

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  • Aysha
    Feb 22, 2013 - 3:09AM

    After the governor resigns, ANP should be given a chance to have their governor. They are part of Sind, and should be considered so

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  • salu
    Feb 22, 2013 - 7:05AM

    scenario is something like this: in pure politics, ppp is ruling all over the place, wherewith to gain back the support of the other regional parties and showing the divide between ppp and mqm has worsened. further on after election, they will again play something in their favor.

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