Former director of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for Pakistan Marc Andre Franche (MAF), who spent four years in Pakistan, has blasted in an interview the social structure of the country.
Marc Andre Franche stated that a critical change could happen only when the elite would sacrifice their individual and family interests for the benefit of the nation.
“Pakistani masses will not be able to cope with the differences where they have been restricted at one end and splendid malls for the rich at the other end”, he said adding no one would want his kids to live in such society.
Only KP has a decent law that gives real power and real money to the local government. Local government does not mean that you just elect them and deny those fiscal resources or power- Marc-Andre Franche
The UNDP director also stated that this is the country where the elite take advantage of the uneducated labor when it comes to making money but when they come to party, they go to London. And when they have to buy things, they go to Dubai. They have to decide whether they need a country or not.
Marc-Andre Franche also criticized the landlords by saying that they had exploited the land over centuries and didn’t pay a single penny for water as tax. He found it embarrassing and added that, “Eventually the landlords come to us and to United Nations and ask for investment in water, sanitation and education for the people in their districts.”
He visited Karachi this month and found the situation of public institutions despair. He stated that you cannot live and grow your business anymore in the Pakistan’s biggest city.
He talked about human development in Pakistan and expressed his frustration that Pakistan is not making progress in terms of poverty reduction, equality and functioning of the institutions.
Marc-Andre Franche added Pakistan has 38 per cent poverty in 2016 which is like sub-Saharan Africa where basic human needs and rights are not respected.
While talking about the local body systems in Pakistan, he went on to say that Pakistan has very low quality of local body system. “Only Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government has evolved a system which gives real powers to local government.”
He added that he is going to finalizing his support for KP government because KP government has put in place a decent local government system.
“Media is one of the pillars of democracy and it has to educate people but in Pakistan the media has been manipulated by powerful sources. Media is of course a business. But a business that does not contribute to the public good has very little utility”, Marc-Andre Franche expressed his feelings of repentance.
Giving an interview to Business Recorder, Marc-Andre Franche said that based on the history of many countries, he does know that the change would eventually come somehow.