Interim local government regime: coalition partners agree to send DCOs home with Nazims -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Interim local government regime: coalition partners agree to send DCOs home with Nazims

ISMAIL DILAWAR

KARACHI: The District Co-ordination Officers (DCOs) are likely to go home along with Nazims, as the PPP-led Sindh government suspects that the powerful bureaucrats might influence results of the forthcoming local body elections.

Further, whereas the two coalition partners, the PPP and the MQM, are said to have settled “everything” after several rounds of bilateral and multilateral core committee’s meetings, the Sindh government is about to issue the much-awaited notification that would render the local government dissolved and administrators appointed in place of the Nazims.

Also, the two parties had cleared the names of Lala Fazlur Rehman and Sajjad Abbasi for the slot of administrators respectively in Karachi and Hyderabad, the two hot spots in terms of political hustle and bustle between the PPP and MQM. The sources told Business Recorder that the PPP and MQM had agreed to omit the DCOs from the administrators-led local government interim regime which under the Sindh Local Government (Amendment) Act, 2010 would be entrusted with the task to run affairs of the grass-roots level democracy until election of the next government.

The administrators would also be helping the Election Commission in conducting “free and fair” LB polls in the province within 120 days of their appointment. According to sources, the DCOs would be shown the door “perhaps” for their suspected political affiliation with different parties, which, the coalition partners believe, might impact their neutrality.

They said besides PPP and MQM the PML-F had also nodded to removal of the DCOs. The sources also claimed that the two coalition partners in Sindh and center had developed consensus on “everything” and, therefore, the Sindh government was about to dissolve the local government “most probably” tonight on return of Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah from Hyderabad. The chief executive visited the city to preside the party’s Sindh Council meeting.

The sources in the local government department, referring to some developments such as the visit of Local Government Minister Agha Siraj Durrani to the Governor House on Monday evening, hinted that a notification was due shortly. PPP’s Karachi Chapter President Najmi Alam, however, came with a different view saying the government notice may take another couple of days.

The sources said the two sides had also finalised the names of Lala Fazlur Rehman, a “non-controversial” local government department official, and Sajjad Abbasi, Executive District Officer Revenue, to be appointed as administrators of Karachi and Hyderabad. “The two names are almost final,” they added.

Najmi Alam also confirmed the name of Lala for the slot. About the issuance and subsequent withdrawal of a notification on the appointment of Taluka Nazims last week, the sources said a departmental inquiry had revealed that the issue was a “drama” staged by some bureaucrats of the local government department. They said the matter was, however, over with the suspension of the two officials involved.
Source: Business Recorder
Date:2/23/2010