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Changing the law: Ehtesab Commission DG quits in a huff over amendments.

The government submitted a reply that former incumbent, Lt Gen (retd) Hamid Khan had resigned on February 24, 2016. Ever since Brigadier (retd) Muhammad Sajjad was given an acting charge.

'The Ehtesab Commission is working legally and independently and there is no illegality in its working and the matter is subjudice in the court,' the reply read.

On Monday, Wazir objected to the answer, demanding that the government tell the house under what law was the K-PEC operating under an acting director general for nearly two years.

Wazir was joined by Awami National Party (ANP) lawmaker Sardar Hussain Babak, who accosted the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) for their much-touted accountability and claim of eliminating corruption.

He added that the law minister had no real answer to the question and was trying to dodge it by labelling the issue as subjudice.

After Deputy Speaker Dr Mehar Taj Roghani tried to paper over the crack by skipping Wazir's follow-up question, the opposition walked out of the house in protest.

Later, the opposition was persuaded to return after Local Government Minister Inayatullah Khan and Higher Education Minister Mushtaq Ghani assured the opposition that the matter would be taken up in a special committee of the K-P assembly.

'KPEC is a flagship institution of the incumbent government so a discussion on it in the house or a committee of the assembly is a positive gesture from the government and it shall go to the credit of the government,' explained Inayatullah, adding that the discussion and any action suggested to address shortcomings in KPEC should be welcomed by the government.

The house will discuss the DG appointment issue in a special committee comprising the parliamentary leaders of all the political parties in the assembly along with Wazir. The report of the committee will be presented in the house.

The house also constituted a committee under the supervision of Speaker Asad Qaiser for resolving the issue of tobacco cess for Swabi and is expected to present its report to the house within 12 days.

The House passed four bills seeking amendments in their respective laws, including the K-P Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (second amendment) Bill 2018. Under the bill, the law secretary was included in the board of directors of the K-P Public Procurement Authority. Moreover, the civil courts were limited from acting on anything done by a procuring entity under the K-P Public Procurement Authority Act in good faith.

It also enabled the procuring entity to conduct the bidding process through electronic means.

The house also passed the K-P Establishment of Information Technology Board (Amendment) Act 2018 seeking the merger of the K-P Information Technology Directorate along with all its assets with the K-P Information Technology Board.

All the projects of the directorate along with its employees will now be transferred to the board.

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Publication:The Express Tribune (Karachi, Pakistan)
Date:Feb 20, 2018
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