Opposition leader in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly Akram Khan Durrani has announced to challenge the amendments to the KP local government act and funds distribution in constituencies across the province.
Durrani was addressing a press conference in the KP Assembly on Tuesday afternoon in which he openly challenged KP Information Minister Shaukat Yousufzai to an open debate on corruption in the billion tree tsunami afforestation project.
He said that the government passed the controversial Local Government (Amendment) Bill, 2019 when the opposition parties were out of the House in protest. “The amendments are not acceptable to us. It abolishes the district tier in the local government system” he said.
The assembly on Monday passed the bill that seeks to abolish the district council in the local government system. In the original bill, 24 departments were to be devolved to the local governments but now after the amendments only nine departments are devolved to the local governments.
The bill was passed by the assembly when the opposition had boycotted the sitting.
Durrani also expressed concern over the attitude of KP chief minister Mahmood Khan, Speaker KP assembly Mushtaq Ahmed Ghani and Secretary Assembly, saying that the opposition would start a movement against them if they did not change their attitudes. “The assembly proceeding would not be possible with such an attitude,” he said, adding that the speaker is not impartial but became a part of the government.
“The government completed the legislation during our protest which is not acceptable to the opposition,” he said, adding that the opposition is united against the attitude of the chief minister and speaker and they have decided to continue their struggle against them. He further said that his party, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl, would hold a million march in Peshawar against the government after Eid.
The opposition leader said that the chief minister has released Rs100 million developmental funds for each member from the treasury benches while the opposition members in the House were ignored. He added that Rs50 million in funds have been released for the ongoing schemes in the constituencies of the government members while for the schemes in the areas of the opposition members, only Rs10 million were released for each. Similarly, Rs2.5 million were released for the developmental schemes of the women lawmakers of the assembly.
Regarding the billion tree tsunami project, Durrani said that they have ample proof of corruption in the project but the information minister fled from the assembly sitting. “We resigned from the standing committee but we are still on the parliamentary commission of the project,” he said, adding that they will present their evidence if the information minister sits with them.
The opposition leader said that PTI members in the National Assembly, including PM Imran Khan, did not come to the assembly for nine months but were taking their allowances. “If they return the assembly allowances which they took during these nine months, we would definitely return the allowance for the day on which we boycotted the sitting.”