NA passes Islamabad Capital Territory Local Govt (Amend) Bill

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Staff Reporter

Islamabad—The National Assembly Friday passed the Islamabad Capital Territory Local Government (Amendment) Bill, 2015 amid opposition’s uproar and protest.
State Minister for Interior and Narcotic Control Balighur Rehman piloted the bill to amend the Islamabad Capital Territory Local Government Act, 2015 [the Islamabad Capital Territory Local Government (Amendment) Bill, 2015] in the House.
Opposing the bill, Dr. Nafeesa Shah alleged that the amendment was tantamount to post effective approval. She said the government took action first and later did legislation.
Asad Umar, Asif Hasnain and Sher Akbar while opposing the bill said Islamabad has two million population and three deputy mayors would further enhance expenditure. They were of the view that there was no need of three deputy mayors in Islamabad.
Amjad Ali and Shazia Marri said the government should not bulldoze the legislation process and should fulfill the constitutional requirement.
Responding to points raised by the lawmakers, Balighur Rehman said the legislation was done for the first time in country’s history to hold local government elections in the Federal Capital. The nation has given mandate to PML-N and decisions were being taken in good spirit.
The minister said out of 10 amendments, nine were proposed on the recommendations given by Election Commission of Pakistan. The statement of objects and reasons of the bill says, there is a strong realization that urban and rural areas of Islamabad Capital Territory have been receiving disproportionate financial resources in disregard to the local needs.
This inequitable allocation of resources had led to inefficiencies in local governance and effective delivery of service. In line with the manifesto of the government, it has been decided to devolve political power and decentralize administrative and financial authority to accountable local government in ICT for effectively delivery of public services at grass roots level.

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