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Local body representatives to be monitored by the government

KARACHI: Two amendments to the Sindh Local Government Act were conceded by the Sindh Assembly on Wednesday notwithstanding objections and hefty sloganeering by opposition leaders.

An alteration to the act demands for observing of local government representatives by the Sindh government, appealing the anger of opposition leaders Khawaja Izharul Hasan of the MQM and Sheheryar Mehr of the PML-F who maintained the move showed the government did not want to hold local government elections.

Sindh Local Government Minister Jam Khan Shoro though struggled that observing of local government representatives was essential to safeguard they did not involve in unlawful doings.

Sindh Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Nisar Ahmed Khuhro listed the amendments as members of the opposition intoned mottos of “shame”, complaining before the assembly presenter and ripping copies of the bill.

The opposition accused the Sindh government of using the pull of the majority in the assembly to get the bill passed.

An additional amendment to the act approved into law on Wednesday was in agreement with a former Supreme Court decision assembling election of local government agents ─ counting mayor, deputy mayor, chairman and vice chairman ─ through secret ballot as an alternative of a show of hands within 60 days.

The modification was approved with agreement in the assembly.

Local government sites are ardently challenged in Pakistan’s main financial centre. Meanwhile it cleared the elections with 135 seats for six Karachi districts, the MQM appears composed to settle the office of Karachi mayor and deputy mayor with Waseem Akhtar as the prime mayoral candidate.

Earlier, the MQM has suspected that local government does not hold meaningful powers, saying the mayor of Karachi will have no power as the PPP-led provincial government has earmarked a total of controls for the situation.