Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Speaker Asad Qaiser has said he will stay in Bannu till Eidul Fitr to oversee relief work for North Waziristan’s displaced inhabitants.
Addressing a gathering at his residence on Tuesday, Qaiser said the provincial government will use all resources at hand to help the internally displaced persons.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan has directed both Chief Minister Pervez Khattak and Qaiser to physically monitor relief work in Bannu, said the speaker. Since Khattak has to deal with his duties as the chief executive of the province, Qaisar has been asked to ensure his presence in Bannu till the end of Ramazan, he added.
“I will be in Bannu and will directly supervise all efforts myself,” said Qaiser. “The party chief has placed his trust in me and I will try to live up to his expectations.” Other senior government officials and representatives of all departments will also be in the district to ensure aid is distributed quickly and efficiently.
According to Qaiser, “If the government has to allocate money from its own budget for relief efforts, it will do it without hesitation.”
He said around 1.5 million people displaced from Bara and Tirah in Khyber Agency, Bajaur and Orakzai agencies were already living in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, and about 700,000 more have joined them as a result of the North Waziristan offensive.
The provincial government was not fully prepared to deal with the mass exodus of people but is nonetheless trying to make arrangements in an emergency and will not spare any effort to alleviate their miseries, stated the speaker. The province stands behind the Pakistan Army, added Qaiser.
He asked philanthropists to come forward and help in “this hour of need”; the Federal government should also help the province deal with the situation.
He said it would be appreciated if the places where displaced families were being lodged were exempted from electricity load-shedding. He suggested each family be provided Rs50,000.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 9th, 2014.