KARACHI: The Pakistan Muslim League-Functional (PML-F) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) have said they oppose the decision of enforcing the new local government system in Sindh by an ordinance. However, the parties will have no objection to any legislation passed as a bill by the provincial assembly.
The announcement was made by parliamentary leader of the PML-F Jam Madad Ali and PML-Q parliamentary leader Shaharyar Mahar at a joint press conference on Thursday.
Both leaders were accompanied by other lawmakers of the PML-F who included Marvi Rashdi, Nusrat Sehar Abbasi, Dr Rafique Bhanbhan and Rana Abdul Sattar.
Jam Madad Ali said that the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), which was negotiating with the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) about the local government system, used to be the champion of democracy and opposed legislation through ordinances in the past.
He wondered why the PPP, the majority party in the Sindh Assembly, now wanted to enforce the new system through an ordinance when it could easily get a bill passed by its members in the house.
The PML-F and the PML-Q are both coalition partners and Mr Ali and Mr Mahar are both members of the provincial cabinet. The former is the provincial minister for science and technology while the latter is the minister for alternative energy.
Mr Ali recalled that the late Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was an architect of democracy and laid the foundation of people’s politics. He said that passing of an ordinance would undermine the sacrifices made by the party.
He said that an ordinance was a temporary legislation and it needed to be reissued every three months. He asked why the government was in such a hurry to impose the ordinance and not get the legislation passed through the proper channel.
While replying to a question, Mr Ali said that his party had already submitted a proposal to the PPP in favour of the commissioner system. He said that his party was not in favour of the dissolution of the revenue department and the police to the local governments. He claimed that other coalition parties, the Awami National Party and National People’s Party, also agreed with the PML-F.
In response to another question, Mr Ali said that though the PPP and the PML-Q were negotiating about the new local government system for over a year but they were consulted only three days back when the PPP’s parliamentary leader, Pir Mazharul Haq, contacted their leadership and assured them that the PML-F and the PML-Q would be kept in the loop and after the draft was finalised.