RTI was recognized internationally to be among the few best laws for good governance

Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Pervez Khattak has said that this province has the distinction to be the first among all federating units to have enacted the right to Information act 2013 that played a visible role in promoting transparency and accountability in government departments. Transparent and merit based decision making was one of the basic ingredients for attracting mass scale investment, economic stability, sustained economic growth and development and correcting the wrong perception, he added. He said that the law of RTI was recognized internationally to be among the few best laws for good governance, upholding merit, ensuring rights of the deserving and making the whole process of justice transparent. He revealed that 10575 people requested access to information and 6728 people were entertained and another 3749 complainants filed their complaints with RTI commission. The commission decided 3229 complaints and a mere 520 complaints were in the process, which he said was the all time best performance of the provincial government in terms of access to information by the public.

He was addressing the faculty members and participants of the 107th National Management Course at Chief Minister House Peshawar. Relevant provincial officials were also present at the occasion.

Chief Minister said that the corrupt system of governance and corrupt political leadership of the country created a wrong perception of the country abroad. When the rich ruling elite did not invest in Pakistan, how could the foreign investors come for investment here, he posed a question. He said that the overseas Pakistanis wanted to invest in their country but the problem was that they did not trust the political leadership holding the helm of affairs.

Pervez Khattak vehemently stated that we should have a transparent system to restore their confidence adding that his government worked hard honestly to revamp the system in consonance with the people’s expectations. His government gave autonomy to public sector institutions to bring them to the standard of international level and established autonomous companies and authorities giving representation to the private sector so that the positive steps could reach the man in the street, he added.

Responding to a question, the Chief Minister said that normally towards the end of a government, the people switched over to other parties but in the case of PTI, the people and the stalwarts of other political parties was joining PTI en-mass that was a new trend and history and on the basis of it he was hopeful to make a comeback adding that the disenchantment of the masses with the past corrupt political forces was because of the bad governance and corrupt practices of the past rulers. The people, he said were siding with PTI for a changed system, a change in governance and a change in the attitude of the ruling parties towards the poor people. 

Regarding another question for the in-built mechanism for efficient delivery, Pervez Khattak told his government depoliticized the public sector institutions and made dozens of enactments for transparency and efficient governance adding that the conflict of interest and the whistle blower laws not only made the ruling party accountable but it would also serve as a deterrence against corruption. 

Pervez Khattak also referred to the local government system of the province which he added was the best one under which additional resources upto 30% of the total developmental outlay was transferred to the grass root level empowering the local governance system to plan their own development for their areas and hoped that the system would resolve the people problems at local level.

On a question about  Ehtasab Commission, Pervez Khattak reminded that it was the differences and the gulf created between the DG and Commissioners that forced the DG to resign. The DG claim was that the Commissioners were interfering in his affairs but the government was totally at bay and kept itself at distance from the intra Ehtesab Commission dispute. Now, the provincial government legislated empowering the Chief Justice of Peshawar High Court to make a decision right from scrutiny to the selection process in this regard.

The Chief Minister also talked about empowerment and autonomy of police force reforming it to be one of the best forces adding his government established CTD, Police Training Schools and a number of other reforms to  bring dynamism to the working of police force. He also reminded the sacrifices of police of the province.

Pervez Khattak said that education and health would continue to be the government priority areas where the flow of resources had been diverted, the missing facilities in schools covered up, the teaching staff recruited in the education sector and the doctors, paramedic and nursing staff arranged in all the healthcare centres throughout the province. He particularly referred to the introduction of Sehat Insaf Card for the 14 lac families in the previous year and 10 lac families this year to cover up 70% of the population to get access to efficient healthcare upto Rs. 5 lac.

Chief Minister said under the billion-tree-tsunami project, his government succeeded the plantation of one billion saplings in the province. The windfall notorious law for the illegal cutting of trees was replaced by effective legislation to encourage scientific growth and cutting of trees. Under the power sector, he said that this province has the capacity to produce 30 thousand megawatt of electricity on run of the river sides and therefore the federal government should focus on it.  His government alone introduced projects of run of the river hydel power generation for the production of 4 thousand megawatt of electricity. He also talked about the 356 micro hydel power projects out of which 80% were complete and ready for handing over to the respective communities.

On a question of unemployment, the Chief Minister said that this province has emerged the most suitable destination for investment following the CPEC. The international investors were landing here for investment and his government had concluded a number of agreements, he added. “This province will connect the entire region of Central Asian Republics as well”. He said his government doubled the revenue generation of the province. Previously it was 30 billion but now it reached 60 billion, he added. He said, we are producing electricity, gas and patrol in excess to our needs but the federal government had never been serious in the provincial rights of the provinces, he added.

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