In his first visit to the province since Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) formed government, Imran Khan urged for a national policy to end terrorism in the region.
Addressing a press conference at the Chief Minister Secretariat after meeting his party’s coalition partners on Monday, Khan claimed there was peace in the tribal areas before 2004, but the leaders initiated military operations at the behest of the US sabotaging the region’s tranquillity.
Since the May 11 elections, two MPAs have died in acts of violence in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
“The US itself has opened a political office for peace talks with the Taliban while they push us to conduct military operations against them,” Khan said, according to the press release issued.
The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) government cannot succeed in achieving peace unless the federal government comes up with a home-based national policy against terrorism. “To achieve peace the federal government must distance itself from the war on terror,” he insisted.
The leader said whenever the government takes initiative for peace talks with the Taliban, the US conducts a drone strike derailing the whole process. Reiterating PTI’s stance regarding drones, Khan said they would support the federal government if it formulates an anti-drone policy.
Speaking about the increase in sectarian violence in the country, Khan said, “There must be a clear national policy on the issue. Just like K-P, Balochistan is also gravely affected by such violence.”
Outlining the PTI-led government’s role in ensuring transparency and ending corruption, Khan maintained all government advisors, MPAs, ministers and bureaucrats will reveal their assets which will be uploaded on government websites for the public’s knowledge.
“We are trying to reduce government expenses and looking for new ways to increase revenue,” Khan said. The 32 rest houses in Galyat for MPAs will be converted to guest houses and the revenue generated from that will be spent on the area’s development, he added.
Khan announced development funds would no longer be given to MPAs instead they would be spent through the district development authority once the new local government system is in place, which aims to empower people at the grassroots level.
Referring to pledges made during election campaigns in Kohat and Karak, the PTI chairman said district development authorities will be constituted to spend the revenue generated from oil and gas royalty. “No royalty funds will be given to MPAs.”
He also revealed that ministers could no longer order the postings or transfers of government officials instead, if any complaints are filed against government officials and employees, an inquiry will be conducted to look into the matter.
Laying out his party’s plans for curbing corruption and ensuring accountability, Khan said the K-P government would constitute a corruption cell under which an independent commission will carry out inquiries.
Replying to a question about charging former president Pervez Musharraf under Article-6 of the Constitution, Khan said, “The rule of law must be ensured. All the problems we have faced in the past five years are mainly because the Constitution was not followed in its true spirit.”
Published in The Express Tribune, June 25th, 2013.
Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.
For more information, please see our Comments FAQ