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October 6, 2015

Centre using Wapda to influence LG polls in Sindh: Khuhro

Karachi

 
October 6, 2015

Karachi
The federal government has been using the Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) to try and influence the outcome of upcoming local government election in Thatta and Sujawal districts.
“Despite payment of power dues by the people, villages are being deprived of electricity in order to favour the candidates of federal government’s party, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), by getting power restored on their requests so it may appear to people that they are the ones resolving their problems,” alleged Sindh senior minister for information and education, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, on Monday.
He was speaking at a press briefing at the media cell of Pakistan People’s Party to apprise the newsmen about the deliberations held by party chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari with leaders from Thatta and Sujawal districts.
“But we want to tell out opponents that they would neither get votes by subjecting the public to excesses nor by using Wapda as their tool,” he said, while urging the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to take notice of the excesses of the water and power authority in the province, the same way it had scrapped the prime minister’s farmers’ package after perceiving it to be influencing the results of upcoming local bodies polls.
The minister said the Sindh government had not put up any resistance or created any hindrances in the way of the ECP for conducting the election and it would allow anyone else to do so. He said the provincial government reserved the right to agitate against anyone hampering and meddling with the electoral process.
He lamented that civilian governments had been unduly blamed for delaying the local government elections when the Sindh leadership had always been willing to conduct them on party basis. He reminded tall that it was also Sindh province that had taken the lead in enacting a new local government law while other parties had moved courts to obstruct the way of upcoming

election.
He said the directives of the Sindh High Court to alter the already-conducted delimitation of constituencies after announcement of the election schedule and submission of nomination forms by prospective candidates, had caused hindrance in the polling process.
He said the Sindh government planned to challenge the decision in the Supreme Court. He expressed his confidence in the superior judiciary and said it should not allow this opportunity to finally conduct the local government election in the province.
The minister said the opposing political parties had clearly seen their defeat in the upcoming election and this was why they had been unduly blaming the PPP for using unfair and corrupt means for making rival candidates withdraw their nominations. He said regardless of the allegations, the PPP would once again emerge victorious in the local bodies’ election.
Answering a question, Khuhro said former president General (retd) Pervez Musharraf could not untangle himself from the Benazir Bhutto murder case since it was twice during his regime that the sites of Karsaz blast (October 18, 2007) Karsaz and Rawalpindi attack (December 27, 2007) were washed within an hour of their occurrence.
Khuhro said Musharraf had even apologised for washing the crime scenes claiming that knew nothing about it. He said the trial court in Rawalpindi had the right to rule in the Benazir Bhutto murder case on the basis of recent testimony given by US journalist Mark Siegel, expressing the hope that the verdict would be just and fair.
He lamented that the apex judiciary in the past had remained silent when PPP founder Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was handed down a death sentence but he expressed the hope that the court would give a fair verdict of the Benazir Bhutto murder case.

Bilawal’s meeting
In separate meetings held with party leaders from Thatta and Sujawal earlier in the day, PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said consultative meetings with Jiyalas from all over the country will continue and they will be taken onboard in all the decision-making processes within the party to help reinvigorate and recharge its cadres.
A couple of months ago, Bilawal began the consultation process from his home district Larkana, and the moved to Islamabad and Lahore and met the leaders from party’s women, students and youth wings.
The meetings on Monday were also attended by Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah, MNA Faryal Talpur, Senator Sherry Rehman, Information Minister Nisar Ahmed Khuhro and Local Government Minister Nasir Hussain Shah.
Various organisational and development matters in the respective districts were discussed in the light of upcoming local bodies election.
Bilawal stressed on the workers to mobilise the people and carry on the legacy of his grandfather. He urged the PPP leaders and workers to remain together and share their happiness and pain while directing the elected representatives to resolve the issues faced by the people of their constituencies.
He also urged the workers to prepare to the local bodies’ election and ensure that people are given are given better choices in the form of candidates who may serve them at the local tiers.