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July 29, 2020

KMC got funds only once in four years to clean drains, says mayor

Karachi

July 29, 2020

Karachi Mayor Wasim Akhtar said on Tuesday rain drains had not been cleaned since 2018 when funds of Rs500 million had been issued on the directives of the apex court.

According to a press statement from the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC), he said the Supreme Court had passed similar directives in 2017, and the corporation had given an estimate of Rs1.12 billion to the court. The apex court had asked the provincial government to release the amount, but it had given only Rs500 million. “The tenders were issued and I overviewed cleanliness then,” he said and added that the Sindh government still owed Rs720 million spent on drains’ cleanliness to the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation.

The mayor said the National Disaster Management Authority had issued an urban flood warning, and he held a presser to bring it to the knowledge of the authorities concerned that the KMC did not have sufficient funds to carry out the cleanliness of drains.

He added that he had written many letters to Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and asked for drains’ cleanliness, but the provincial government did not pay heed to his requests. “In a meeting led by Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and attended by Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Hussain Shah and others, it was decided that CLICK would carry out the cleanliness of drains in Karachi in the supervision of Zubair Channa, who was project director and representing the World Bank,” he added.

He said it was also decided that the KMC would provide technical assistance for cleanliness for a project of Rs11 billion. He was of the view that the KMC had provided lists of drains and details about chocked points to the CLICK that initiated the cleanliness work.

“The cleanliness of drains is not a permanent solution as garbage is still being dumped in nullahs. This issue will persist until the garbage disposal system is upgraded.” The mayor said only Rs500 million was issued to the KMC to clean drains in the last four years, and details of its expenditures had already been given to the Sindh government.

He also denied that funds were issued to the KMC every year for the cleanliness of drains. He added that the situation of drains in Karachi was miserable as they were full of garbage. “There are 500 small drains under the administrative control of the DMCs and no funds have been issued for their cleanliness. Karachi needs help and someone who should own it. There is dire need to resolve the city’s issues on an urgent basis. Laws could be amended and a special package should be announced for Karachi,” he added.