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May 19, 2019

Our own people will fund govt, says Imran

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May 19, 2019

PESHAWAR: Prime Minister Imran Khan said he will show how to collect the money and the nation will pay the money to run the country.

Addressing a delegation from tribal districts at the Governor House on Saturday, the prime minister appreciated the tribal people for maintaining peace in their areas during the transition period when there were no laws enforced for almost a year since the announcement of the merger.

Governor Shah Farman, Chief Minister Mehmood Khan and leaders of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) were also present. “This showed that the old tribal system was peace-loving as even before 9/11, the tribal areas had minimal crime rate and people were also getting easy justice through an indigenous governance system,” he added. The premier said new laws and governance system would be introduced in the tribal districts in accordance with tribal traditions and culture. He told the elders the new system would almost be compatible with the old one and the government would try to ensure its minimum impact on tribal traditions and culture.

Imran said the government had learned lesson from the experience of Dir and Swat when the crime rate had swollen dramatically after the merger of two areas. “This happened because the people of those areas had no understanding of the laws enforced in settled areas,” he added. The premier said the government would enforce alternate dispute resolution mechanism in the merged areas too that was also experimented in the KP during the last five years. He said the new local government system is also similar to governance system in tribal areas. The prime minister said under the system village councils would be formed and the villages would get direct funding and be empowered to make their own decisions regarding development. He said similar system would also be introduced in Punjab.

The prime minister said though the merger of tribal areas was not an easy task, however, the government would ensure the resolution of their problems with the consultation of tribal elders through an exclusive committee. He said the Parliament had increased the number of seats for merged tribal areas before the upcoming elections and in future they would get full representation in the national and provincial assemblies. The prime minister recalled that in the past there was none to raise voice for the tribal people when they faced terrorism and displacement due to military operations and drone attacks. “However, after the merger with KP, this would not happen again,” he assured.

The premier also addressed a gathering at the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre in Hayatabad. About the issue of protesting doctors, the premier said KP doctors running false campaign against health reforms by saying the government is about to privatise state hospitals. "We won't be privatising hospitals. I won’t take into account anyone's blackmailing tactics in improving government hospitals," the premier said. Imran said treatment is not being provided as per international standards in the government hospitals. "I ask the doctors who are protesting against the reforms in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, are they satisfied with the treatment being provided? We want to bring state hospitals to the level of Shaukat Khanum Hospital. We won't step back in improving the standards of the hospital. Hopefully, there will be soon a hospital in KP up to the international standards," he said.

Meanwhile, Imran Khan directed the KP cabinet to ensure the control of prices of eatables in the province and take action against the hoarders. In a meeting with the members of the provincial cabinet, the prime minister asked the provincial government to monitor the prices on a daily basis for relief to the common man. The meeting also offered Fateha for the departed soul of the father of Adviser to KP CM Ajmal Wazir.

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