PESHAWAR: Rallying outside the Khyber Assembly, the local government representatives from different districts on Tuesday set a deadline for the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government to restore their powers or else get ready for a greater protest.
The protesters including Mayor of Capital City Metropolitan Government Zubairr Ali, Mayor of Mardan Himayatullah Mayar, Sibghat Haroon, Arbab Usman, Ghayur Khattak, MPA Ikhtiar Wali, tehsil council chairmen, village council chairmen and councillors and others blocked the road in front of assembly and chanted slogans against the government.
They asked the government to restore powers and functions of the elected representatives in its true spirit till August 14 or else they will start protest demonstrations in the entire province.
The protesters, Local Council Association, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, tehsil chairmen/ mayors village and neighbourhood councils and councillors rejected the amendments to the local government Act and demanded the restoration of the act as it was presented to the Supreme Court before the election.
The protesters marched from the Bacha Khan Chowk to Surey Pul and converged at the KP Assembly Chowk.
Speaking on the occasion, Peshawar Mayor Zubair Ali warned of a sit-in outside the Chief Minister’s House if the powers were not taken back from bureaucracy and returned to the councillors.
He said not a single member or the people who had elected these members were ready to accept the amendments to the act.
Zubair Ali said these representatives had been elected by the people to serve them but the provincial government was creating hurdles for them.
He said the local government representatives would not allow the provincial government to deprive them of their powers and resources which were required to enable them to serve the masses.
The mayor said the government wanted to fail the local government system but said the elected representatives would foil such designs and conspiracy against the development of the province.
He said the local governments had not been able to prepare their first budgets due to the alleged highhandedness of the KP government which was continuously reducing their powers after the ruling party’s abysmal performance in the last local government elections.
Himayatullah Mayar said the government was taking every step to discredit the local government system and create differences between the local government representatives and voters.
However, he said, the elected representatives would utilize every opportunity to create awareness among the masses against the government’s unjust approach to the system.
He said the future line of action was being chalked out which would ultimately bring the government to its knees.
The Mardan mayor believed that the government had shown contempt for the Supreme Court decision by bringing amendments to the Local Government Act after the election.
Members of the provincial assembly Sardar Hussain Babak, Mian Nisar Gul and Ikhtair Wali also spoke on the occasion.
Assuring full support to the local government representatives, they vowed not to remain silent over, what they said was, government injustice with the local governments in the province.
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