ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that the new local government system introduced in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) was adopted after thorough research on different governance system implemented in many countries around the world.
PM Imran Khan was addressing a media briefing session in Islamabad over the new local government system implemented in Punjab and KP.
The prime minister said that he believed that new leadership would emerge through the new LG system.
He also announced that the government will provide direct funds to every village council for development work.
“Direct elections will be held for village council in KP and panchayat (village council) in Punjab under new LG system,” he said.
The premier said that the older system increased corruption on local level where union council (UC) members usually blackmailed the district nazims (mayors).
The premier detailed that funds of up to Rs40 billion would be allocated for 22,000 village councils of Punjab province.
“Under the new system, election will be held into two levels. Citizens can directly elect a tehsil nazim in the new system,” highlighted PM Khan.
“An elected representative is allowed to bring his own cabinet in cities, whereas, in bigger cities, mayor will also be authorised to make his own cabinet.”
While shedding light on panchayats in Punjab, PM Khan said, “In older system, district nazim was elected indirectly, but now polls will be held on 22,000 panchayats across the province and election will be organised on tehsil level.”
PM Khan said that all funds will be spent on citizens and every city would collect its revenue by own, adding that Lahore city collected $32 million revenue annually. “How can we prosper if the cities fail to collect their own revenue?” he questioned.
“We are here, after taking lesson from our past experiences with the local government system in KP,” he said.
“If you observe London’s [local government] system, people directly elect their mayor. The mayor then brings his own cabinet. In Tehran, you will see cleanliness everywhere in the city despite sanctions imposed on Iran. Moreover, all revenue collections were made by bigger cities in India as well.”
“However, we have set our priority to spend as much as we can only on nationals.”
“The government should sense the fact that the country needs a new infrastructure if we are consistently going towards downward direction. We need an appropriate LG system in Pakistan”, he said.
PM Khan rejected speculations circulating for consideration of presidential system in Pakistan. “I don’t know, who is saying that the government is planning for presidential system.
“The parliament needs to unite first if we are to opt for presidential system”, he aded.
During the media briefing session, PM Khan announced that Shabbar Zaidi has been appointed as chairman of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
PM Khan was of the view that the federal government went bankrupt due to the 18th Constitutional Amendment as the provinces failed in tax collection.