The judicial commission investigating non-provision of potable water, proper sanitation facilities and healthy environment to Sindh’s people has directed the Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA) to submit record of multi-storey buildings constructed in the past two years, as well as the housing schemes built or approved during the period.
Headed by Justice (retd) Amir Hani Muslim on Thursday, the Supreme Court-appointed judicial body directed the SBCA to submit all the details within a week.
The commission directed the authority’s chief to clarify if the proposed buildings that were approved and those that were already constructed had obtained certificates from the civic agencies for providing all necessary facilities to the occupants.
Muslim directed private builders and developers to file their comments on an application filed by citizens accusing them of constructing structures without any SBCA-approved building plan. The applicants said the SC had restricted construction beyond six floors, but the private builders had ignored the order.
The commission directed the private builders and the SBCA to file their comments, as well as ordered the authority to submit record of the approval that it had granted to such projects.
Cantonment Board Clifton (CBC) Deputy Chief Executive Officer Ghulam Mohammad Abro told the judicial body that the board would ensure that no solid municipal waste was seen on the streets or roads. He also ensured the commission that the cantonment would be more careful in future.
The judicial body directed the CBC to ensure that all the solid waste was collected and disposed of at garbage disposal and landfill sites. It also directed the Sindh Solid Waste Management Board managing director to visit the board’s jurisdiction to monitor waste collection and disposal.
Regarding schemes of rehabilitation of district headquarters and taluka headquarters hospitals across the province, Health Secretary Dr Fazlullah Pechuho said the projects had failed to deliver.
Chief Secretary Rizwan Memon said the government had a monitoring & evaluation cell in its planning & development department that could evaluate if the projects could be allowed to continue.
The commission directed the cell to submit its report on the matter within a week, and said that in the intervening period, the consultants appointed for the projects should be denotified, as according to the CS, no consultant was required in repair & maintenance works when the nature of the project was rehabilitation.
The judicial body directed the CS to notify the central procurement committee as the technical committee in the health department that would be empowered to co-opt an expert in case the committee desired assistance in a specific field.
The commission observed that the technical committee would have all the authority to procure medical and surgical equipment, machines and furniture or any other item to be installed or fixed within public hospitals.
The judicial body made it clear that the powers of central procurement committee and the technical committee of the health department would extend to all projects under the health department, saying that from now on, it would be the committee’s domain in place of any other authority to procure medicines, furniture, instruments and machines on ongoing projects.
The commission asked the National Accountability Bureau chairman to appoint any officer of the level of additional director to be part of the technical committee as proposed to ensure transparency in the work assigned to the committee.
The judicial body was informed that stone-crushing plants within Sindh’s Guddu locality had been closed down. The commission directed the relevant deputy commissioner to stay alert and ensure that the plants were not restored.
The judicial body also directed the chief of the Karachi Water & Sewerage Board to discuss with his department the installation of meters on pumping stations. Regarding encroachment of drains in Karachi, the CS said a survey was required while the city mayor sought time to submit his feedback on the issue, which would be taken up on March 27.
The commission also ordered that all the financial issues relating to the Shikarpur municipality would be dealt by the Shikarpur deputy commissioner as an interim arrangement until further orders.
The judicial body appointed the Shikarpur district & sessions judge as inquiry officer to investigate into the allegations levelled against the chairman and the chief municipal officer of the Shikarpur municipality. The commission directed the judge to submit a report as well as fix responsibility of corruption within two months. The judicial body then adjourned the hearing until March 27.
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