Sindh Information and Labour Minister, Saeed Ghani, has completely ruled out the possibility of reviving the municipal system in the province envisaged under the Sindh Local Government Ordinance-2001 of Pervez Musharraf’s regime no matter if a protest sit-in continues outside the Sindh Assembly building in Karachi for an indefinite time.
Speaking at a press conference here on Wednesday, the Sindh Information Minister made it clear that the revival of the Sindh Local Government Ordinance-2001 was out of the question at someone’s desire as doing agitation on roads for this cause was an exercise in futility.
He said they were ready to face the situation of protest if the deadlock with the opposition political parties in the province further persisted due to the scrapping of the local government ordinance of 2001.
He said that they were open to suggestions to improve the provincial local government law, as the Opposition parties should give the same, as the valid proposals given by them would be incorporated to improve the municipal system of the province.
He said the Opposition Muttahida Quami Movement should keep in mind that the Election Commission of Pakistan and not the Sindh government was tasked with the responsibility to carry out delimitation of the constituencies for conducting the local government elections in the province.
He said the Sindh government was empowered only to determine the number of union councils in an area.
He told media persons that the Sindh government had agreed to revive town municipal administrations in Karachi after amending the Sindh Local Government Act-2013 in accordance with the consensus demand of all the Opposition parties in the province.
Saeed Ghani said that he himself and many other members of the Pakistan People’s Party had been in the favour of retaining the system of district municipal administrations in Karachi but the desire of the Opposition in Sindh had been given preference for reviving the town system.
He said although the MQM did claim that Karachi belonged to it but the Opposition party didn’t even know about the history of the famous Gulshan-e-Iqbal area of Karachi. The city’s neighbourhood was not named after the National Poet of Pakistan, Allama Iqbal, as in fact it was named after a person Iqbal Khaskheli who had built a Goth in the area, Ghani added.
He said the Opposition parties in their press conferences had blamed that the Sindh government hadn’t provided to them the maps of new delimitation of the constituencies but the fact of the matter was that the maps couldn’t be drawn till the Election Commission completed the process of delimitation.
He advised the MQM and Jamaat-e-Islami that both the Opposition political parties shouldn’t destroy the peace of Karachi and push the city to the brink of bloodshed for securing their own vested political interests.
He said the JI had been following in the footsteps of MQM to gain undue political popularity in Karachi. He said the JI had displayed the banners in the city carrying the slogan that Karachi was under occupation, as the Opposition party should tell as the city was under whose occupation.