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February 5, 2019

Restructuring, reforms: Punjab will have seven additional chief secretaries

Top Story

February 5, 2019

ISLAMABAD: Under the proposed new governance model for Punjab, the province will have seven additional chief secretaries -- each one responsible for a set of departments falling in one sector and doing related nature of jobs for better coordination and performance.

Additionally ministerial “Coordination Committees”, comprising relevant federal and provincial ministers, are also being recommended for harmonisation between the Centre and the provinces in the areas of finance, information, agriculture, tourism, etc.

Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry, when contacted told The News, that the proposed governance model for Punjab will also be extended to KP -- the province which is also ruled by the PTI.

Fawad Chaudhry explained that “Coordination Committee” on finance will comprise federal minister for finance and the provincial finance minister. Similar committees, he said, will be constituted for information, agriculture, tourism etc. and the purpose is to improve policymaking decisions as well as the execution of these policies.

The minister said that as per the proposal, there will be seven additional chief secretaries in Punjab. Each additional chief secretary will be in charge of three-four provincial departments for coordinated policy and decision making. For example, there will be an additional chief secretary looking after the provincial departments like livestock, irrigation, fisheries and agriculture.

Similarly, an additional secretary will look after the departments like sports, youth affairs and tourism to address the missing links for better coordination. According to Fawad Chaudhry, these additional chief secretaries will be the “champions of change”. All the additional secretaries will report to the chief secretary.

The proposed new governance model was discussed in a meeting chaired by prime minister and held in Punjab on Sunday. The meeting was attended by the chief minister, federal ministers, provincial ministers and economic experts. Adviser on Finance Salman Shah suggested the new governance structure in Punjab.

Interesting, for government restructuring, governance and civil service reforms, Prime Minister Imran Khan has two special aides. But so far none of the reform and restructuring proposal, suggested by the two, has been approved by the prime minister or the cabinet. However, Salman Shah's new governance model for Punjab appears to have clicked the prime minister.

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