CDA co-opts 2 members into its board in violation of law

ISLAMABAD-The Capital Development Authority has co-opted two private members into its board while ignoring ‘clash of interest’ and even without getting approval from the federal government, which is mandated to make such appointments according to the authority’s ordinance.
The CDA board is a supreme decision making body while CDA is not just a development authority but it is also a regulator in many segments.
The board members are appointed by the federal government as per the section 6 of the CDA Ordinance but there is no provision of co-opted members from the business community.
Meanwhile, the clause “e” of the section-8 of the CDA Ordinance clearly disqualifies any person for the membership of board, who have a clash of interest or even financial interest in the civic authority.
“No person shall be or shall continue to be a member who has a financial interest in any scheme or a conflicting interest directly or indirectly between his interests as a member and his private interests and has failed to disclose such interest in writing to the Federal Government,” the said clause reads.    
At present CDA’s own serving members and Chairman, Chief Commissioner Islamabad, Commissioner Rawalpindi and three prominent experts including architect Nair Ali Dada, literary person Iftikhar Ahmed Arif and Vice Chancellor Bahu-ud-Din Zakria University Multan Dr. Muhammad Ali are the permanent members of CDA, which were dully notified by the federal government.     
Earlier, in last month it was announced by the Chief Commissioner Islamabad and Chairman CDA Noor ul Amin Mengal during his visit to the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry to co-opt its president as member of the CDA board and he took a stance that the move will enable the input of private sector into the policy making.
However, instead of following due legal course of action and without getting an approval in this regard, the authority not only co-opted President Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry but also co-opted President of Islamabad Industrial Association as members in the CDA board.
In background discussion, the senior level officers of the authority criticized the decision and said that the presence of such representatives will harm the official secrecy and future planning of the civic authority.
They were of the view that the decision is one of its own kind and that no such appointment was made in the history of CDA and even nowhere in the rest of the development authorities of the other cities.
It is pertinent to mention here that when the Mayor of Islamabad Shaikh Anser Aziz was appointed as Chairman CDA, the Islamabad High Court not only scrapped that appointment in its decision but directed the federal government to appoint renowned specialists of respective fields as CDA board members.   
A former legal advisor of the CDA Kashif Ali Malik while responding on the appointments said it is very much clear that CDA board cannot co-opt any member as it is the domain of federal government, which is the federal cabinet.
He said on the other side, Justice Athar Minallah in his judgment held that no person can be appointed as board member, who has the financial interest in the CDA.
Senior officers believe that there are several other ways to get the input of the business community and they can be given hearing opportunities in the board on case to case basis but their permanent inclusion is not justified under the law.
Written questions were sent to the Assistant Director Public Relations CDA Kamran Qureshi but till filing of this story no response has been made.

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