Why KWSB’s six experts quit one after another?

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The Karachi Water and Sewerage Board’s senior management team has seen the resignation of six out of eight private members in a matter of months. They have refused to be on the board of directors. Their resignations got attention as it was a collective move at the time of the appointment of the new KWSB managing director. Suleman Chandio, the former KWSB MD and Tariq Hussain resigned on July 15. Simi Sadaf Kamal and Barrister Abdul Sattar Pirzada resigned the very next day on July 16. Two other members, Asad Ali Shah and Rizwan Rauf, resigned from the Board on March 19 and March 20. It started getting attention when the resignations showed a chain pattern. Initially, most of the media linked the resignations to the appointment of the new KWSB chief Khalid Shaikh in place of Asadullah Khan. The media reports were that the private members were not ready to work under the newly appointed KWSB MD as he was a grade-19 officer when Khan was a grade-20 officer. But this is not true. A source in the KWSB, on the condition of anonymity, said the real reasons behind the resignations. The source said key government officers were not considering the recommendations of the private members seriously and made changes to the minutes of the meetings without the consent of the private members. “Suleman Chandio had raised concerns over the changing of his recommendations made in the minutes of the meeting held on May 19, 2020,” the source said. When Chandio and other members were contacted to get their version on the unusual resignations. Chandio—a senior retired bureaucrat—says his health won’t allow him to continue working as a Board member. On the changes to the meeting minutes, Chandio politely declined to comment saying that he is bound to not disclose government matters, as per government policy. “I am a retired government officer and even abide by the services rules,” he said, explaining that it’s like he couldn’t even hear the question asked. But Chandio ruled out a connection between the resignations and the appointment of the new KWSB chief. He said four meetings of the have been held on November 22, 2019, January 2, 2020, February 19, 2020 and May 19, 2020. Sadaf, too, said it had nothing to do with the KWSB chief. But refuse to comment further. Another member, Tariq Hussain, said he was not ready to commit to the said development. Barrister Abdul Sattar Pirzada said he resigned due to some personal engagements and it had nothing to do with the new appointment. Rizwan Rauf and Asad Ali Shah both resigned citing personal engagements too.

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