KARACHI-The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) expressed its surprise on Sunday at the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) decision to freeze development funds in Sindh, including the budgetary allocation for providing flood-resistant houses to the floods victims and solar panels to the poor families.
In a letter to the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC), PPP Central Election Cell in charge Senator Taj Haider requested the ECP to reverse its decision to freeze the funds. He added that the freeze on the funds for ongoing development schemes was illegal under the Election Act 2017.
“When amendment to Section 230 of the Election Act 2017 was being discussed by the Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reforms … the members had unanimously held that the caretakers would not be allowed to block or alter any policies or to stop ongoing development projects,” he recalled.
He stressed that 50,000 houses, out of the planned 2 million had already been built in a three months, while 200,000 houses had been provided solar panels. “The budgeted target is to put solar panels on 2.1 million houses,” he added.
“The most marginalised of our people, living in the remotest and most backward areas of our country deserve electricity as a fundamental right and this is what the Pakistan People’s Party is endeavouring to ensure,” the senator wrote in the letter.
“A technical and financial model based on the concept of reconstruction of Germany after the World War II has been designed and is being implemented for reconstruction of 2 million houses swept away by the torrents in Sindh,” the senator explained.
aUrging the ECP to reverse the freeze on the funds, he said: “Legality or illegality aside, there is also a human side to development issues, especially those issues which are oriented towards providing relief to the wretched of the earth. This perhaps should remain our prime concern.”
Separately, senior PPP leader and former water resource minister Syed Khursheed Shah said in a statement that some urgent measures for public relief and economic stability by the caretaker government were inevitable in the current situation.
Shah said that the people and the state had always been at the centre of the PPP’s politics, therefore, the part always took its decisions keeping in mind the interest of the nation. He urged the caretaker government to show extraordinary abilities to deal with the ongoing difficulties.
Shah linked a stability rupee to the economic prosperity and development, stressing that immediate measures were needed to stabilise the rupee against the dollar. With the strengthening of the rupee, he said the economy would also be strengthened.
The former federal minister expressed the hope that the caretaker government would take decisions on matters of the public interest in favour of the people, so that some solution to the current problems of the people could be made possible.