New Local Govt system to bring new leadership, says PM Imran

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that the new local government system introduced in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) was adopted after thorough research on different governance system implemented in many countries around the world.
PM Imran Khan was addressing a media briefing session in Islamabad over new local government system implemented in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). He said that a new leadership will emerge through the new LG system.
“Direct elections will be held for village council in KP and panchayat in Punjab under new LG system,” he said. The premier said that the older system increased corruption on local level where union council (UC) members usually blackmailed district nazim.
He also announced that the government will provide direct funds to every village council for development work. The premier detailed that Rs40 billion funds will be allocated for 22,000 village councils of Punjab province.
“Under the new system, election will be held into two levels. Citizens can directly elect a tehsil nazim in the new system,” highlighted PM Khan.
“An elected representative is allowed to bring his own cabinet in cities, whereas, in bigger cities, mayor will also be authorised to make his own cabinet.”
While shedding light on panchayats in Punjab, PM Khan said, “In older system, district nazim was elected indirectly, but now polls will be held on 22,000 panchayats across the province and election will be organised on tehsil level.”
PM Khan announced, “All funds will be spent on citizens and every city will collect its revenue by own.” He added, “Lahore city collects $32 million revenue annually and how can we get prosper if the cities failed to collect its revenue.”
“We are here, after taking lesson from our past experiences from local government system in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP),” he said.
The premier pointed, “Even if you observe London’s system, people are directly electing their mayor. London mayor brings his own cabinet. In Tehran, you will see cleanliness everywhere in the city despite sanctions imposed on Iran. Moreover, all revenue collections were made by bigger cities in India as well.”
“However, we have set our priority to spend as much as we can only on nationals.” He said, “The government should sense the fact that the country needs a new infrastructure if we are consistently going towards downward direction. We need an appropriate LG system in Pakistan.”
PM Khan rejected speculations circulating around for consideration of presidential system in Pakistan. He said, “I don’t know, who is saying that the government is planning for presidential system.” “I really don’t know about the presidential system’s debate, which suddenly emerges,” he said.
The premier said that the parliament needs to get united first for presidential system.
During the media briefing session, PM Khan announced that Shabbar Zaidi has been appointed as chairman of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
PM Khan was of the view that the federal government went bankrupt due to the 18th Constitutional Amendment as the provinces were failed in tax collection.
While answering a question, the premier said that mafias will always react over changes and reformations.
Meanwhile, no power load-shedding will be carried out on eighty percent feeders across the country during the holy month of Ramazan as a result of improvement brought in the transmission system.
This was informed to a high level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan on energy reforms in Islamabad today.
The meeting was informed that a load management plan has been prepared for the remaining twenty percent feeders where load shedding will be carried out keeping in view the line losses.
However, the meeting was informed that uninterrupted power supply will be ensured across the country during Sehr and Iftar timings.
The meeting was informed that the campaign launched by present government to check power pilferage and ensure recoveries has started producing positive results.
An additional amount of forty eight billion rupees was recovered as a result of this campaign from December 2018 to March 2019.
It was anticipated that this amount will reach eighty billion rupees by the end of this year.
These additional recoveries are expected to reach 190 billion rupees by June next year.
Apprising the Prime Minister about the progress achieved so far to check the power theft, it was informed that over twenty seven thousand FIRs have so far been registered whilst 4225 arrests have come into effect.
It was informed that action has also been taken against the officials involved in the pilferage.
On the circular debt, the Prime Minister was informed that it will be reduced from four hundred and fifty billion rupees to ninety-six billion rupees in the fiscal year 2019-20.
The meeting was informed that the target to completely overcome the issue of ciruclar debt is December next year.
About the power tariff, the Prime Minister was informed that the flawed policies of previous regimes did not incorporate net hydel profits and the expenditures incurred on different projects in the power prices.
As a result the consumers are compelled to bear the additional burden.
The Prime Minister was informed that it is the first time in history that a power demand and supply plan has been prepared for twenty five years.
He was informed that a renewable energy policy has been framed in order to produce cheap electricity in the country.
The policy targets to increase the share of renewable sources in the power generation to twenty per cent by 2025 and thirty per cent by 2030.
The meeting was also briefed about reforms in the Petroleum sector.
It was informed that the policy regarding oil and gas exploration and production is being revisited.
It was informed that the country’s first shell policy is being formulated. – NNI

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