GILGIT: Now that a cabinet has been announced for the region, Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Minister Hafeezur Rahman is looking to put important matters in place.
The CM has set a deadline for secretaries to submit targets, which are to be achieved in the first 100 days of the government.
“The secretaries have been asked to identify the targets, which can be delivered in the first 100 days by July 13,” an official of the CM’s Secretariat said on Saturday. A day earlier, the CM chaired the first cabinet meeting of the newly elected government.
“The chief minister has asked the secretaries to set realistic targets to reduce the duration of outages, ensure availability of drinking water and repair dilapidated roads,” he added.
After winning the recent legislative assembly elections, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz announced it would provide relief to the general public within the first 100 days of its government.
According to the official, the chief minister reduced number of vehicles which were part of his security protocol from nine to three. One of these vehicles is an ambulance which has been relieved to deal with emergency situations.
“The chief minister also issued orders for equal duration off power outages and cutting of special power lines for VIPs,” the official added. “In order to provide clean drinking water to residents, the government has decided to overhaul filtration plants in the region.”
Speaking to The Express Tribune on Saturday, Minister for Education and Information Ibrahim Sanai said education, health and the provision of electricity are what the government wants to focus on during the first 100 days of its tenure.
“These are the chief minister’s priorities and he wants concrete results from all of us,” said the minister. “The first cabinet meeting provided an opportunity for him to specify policy guidelines for the ministers to follow in future.”
Rahman has also taken notice of the lack of security for those travelling on Karakoram Highway, the only route connecting G-B with the rest of the country.
According to Sanai, the CM has called for stringent security measures on the highway to ensure safety for passengers at all cost.
The government has also decided to introduce reforms in the police department to enable it to maintain law and order. “The force will be equipped and more inductions will also be made on merit very soon,” Sanai said. “In Gilgit, apart from close-circuit cameras, night vision cameras would also be installed to keep an eye on sensitive areas.”
Checks and balances
Rahman has also taken notice of corruption and mismanagement in mega projects introduced during the previous government’s tenure. He asked the relevant authorities to recover money from companies involved in these projects.
The chief minister also ordered an enquiry on the RCC bridge connecting Gilgit with Danyore, which has yet to be completed. Rahman also asked the relevant authorities to repair wooden bridges in the region so that they can be converted into tourist attractions.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 12th, 2015.