LAHORE: PML-N senior leader Ahsan Iqbal says Prime Minister Imran Khan himself reached the PM’s office with the help of the NRO [deal], given to him about the case of foreign funding.
Speaking to media, he said it was time to declare Imran Khan and Shahzad Akbar offenders, saying the two would find no room to hide on this planet once details of their corruption surfaced. He said, the PML-N era was an era of record development in the country and the PTI government could not overshadow our tenure performance despite being accused of corruption. He appealed to the head of the Pakistani court to take a notification suo motu of accepting Rs70 billion as a commission on the Multan Sukkur Motorway, which was addressed to him by the government. He said the project amount was being invested by China, which directly transferred the amount to its own recommended contractor. He said that in reality, the government itself was the one who got the commission to benefit medicine, atta, and the sugar mafia. He said the PDM stands firm and its leadership is united on one agenda point that the game that has been played with the Pakistani people over the past 72 years must end soon now. He said instead of making internal changes, a viable option would be for the entire opposition to step down. He said that the system would be nothing more than a piece of paper when 400 lawmakers would submit their resignations.
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The chief minister of Sindh has decided to hold a groundbreaking ceremony for the 39-kilometer Malir Toll Road project in the second week of November. He also approved the construction of a connecting road for the Korangi.
Syed Murad Ali Shah took this decision on Thursday during a meeting he chaired at the CM Building to review a project launched as part of a public-private partnership.
Malir Toll Road
The Sindh Investment Department notified the chief executive that the concession agreement for the Malir Toll Road project had been implemented, while an independent auditor as well as an engineer had been appointed for the project.
The meeting was informed that the agreement was being finalized and the bank had begun approving the financial closure of the project, while the concessionaire had finalized the detailed design of the project.
The Malir Toll Road is a 39 km long road which will be built along the Malir River. This will be a four-lane line. The initial estimate of the completion period is three years, but CM has directed the investment department to complete it in two years.
Three overpasses and eight underground roads will be constructed as part of the project, which will start from the KPT Interchange in Qayyumabad and end at the Karachi-Hyderabad Highway near Kathore. CM Shah gave the investment department permission to mobilize machinery for the project, saying he will lay the foundation stone in the second week of next month.
Korangi connecting road
The chief executive also approved the construction of a 12 km connecting road for Korangi. The starting point of the road is Creek Avenue at the Korangi Causeway intersection and ends at the PAF Airmen Golf Club.
The road alignment will be along the Korangi Causeway and the Malir River. This will be a new four-lane road that connects to Korangi. Shah directs the planning & development department to complete geotechnical investigations and traffic surveys before submitting their results for collection as part of a public-private partnership or through an Annual Development Plan.
Municipal Wastewater Recycling Plant at Treatment Plant-I in Karachi aims to supply 50 million gallons of recycled wastewater per day in two phases – 30mgd in first phase and 50mgd total in second phase – to Haroonabad Wastewater Treatment Plant for Industrial Estate SITUS .
The private sector will be involved to bring water supply to industry, handle operations & maintenance, upgrade and replacement, and prepare the necessary water supply infrastructure.
A special pipeline network will be installed for water distribution to industries in the SITE Area. CM directed its government public-private partnership unit to accelerate the project and start working on it.
The 30mgd water supply project requires the establishment of a special bulk water transmission system from Dhabeji to Korangi Crossing to supply an additional 30mgd of water, of which 10mgd will be provided for the Dhabeji Industrial Zone and 20mgd to the South Karachi District.
This also includes laying a pipeline from Dhabeji to the Korangi Crossing, and setting up a pumping station and filter factory at the Korangi Crossing Area. The water will be distributed through the existing network at the Karachi Water & Sewerage Board and the cantonment board.
The chief executive was informed that KWSB was interested in building a wastewater treatment plant project at TP-IV, and that the project covered the design, construction and management of 180mgd primary and secondary treatment plant facilities.
The Asian Development Bank’s Public Private Partnership Office is in the process of hiring a consultant for the project feasibility study. It has submitted an expression of interest to undertake transaction consulting services of the TP-IV project.
CM said the project had been approved at the 30th Public-Private Partnership Policy Council meeting to carry out advisory services. He directed the investment department to speed up consulting services to get the project started.
The Jamila Wastewater Pumping Station Project requires the rehabilitation, upgrading and operation of the existing Jamila Water Pumping Station in Karachi, including the adjacent infrastructure. The CM directed KWSB to present the project to the Public-Private Partnership Policy Board so that project implementation could be approved as part of the public-private partnership.
Two people who face charges following the Office of Serious Fraud’s investigation of the New Zealand First Foundation will temporarily hide their names.
The verdict ordered from Judge Winter is released tonight.
The pair, neither of whom are ministers, current lawmakers or party candidates, have been accused of depositing more than $ 740,000 into the foundation’s accounts.
They appeared in court yesterday where Robert Stewart, on behalf of Herald NZME publisher Stuff and RNZ, challenged a crackdown order surrounding the case.
The judge has kept his decision till today.
The suppression of names was originally given until they appeared again in court on October 29, but the media filed to challenge the order out of public interest in light of the October 17 election.
Charges of obtaining through fraud were charged against both of them on September 23.
In making his decision, Judge Winter said that the release of one of the defendants’ names “may at this point inform potential voters for the New Zealand First Party who have not cast their ballot”.
“Those who have done it [voted], then will be stripped of the names of the two accused persons and the media comments that would be associated with them.
Judge Winter said the publication of one of the defendants’ names “at this stage of at least six days into the follow-up voting period, could unfairly bother those who have cast their vote as much as it informs those who have not”.
The identification of one of the defendants can then easily identify the other defendant, Judge Winter said.
However, Winter said the SFO had been careful in notifying the New Zealand public of the allegations “before the start of the initial voting period”.
It happened via press release.
Judge Winter also said he was satisfied the threshold for extreme hardship caused by one of the defendants and those connected to the person would have been met if the names were released.
In particular, it reflects the media scrutiny that will fall on the defendants because of the general election.
“At this time when there will be an intense media focus on his name and his connection to the elections will mean so [the person] may be unfairly slandered in the minds of the prospective jurors when [the person] finally on trial. “
One of the defendants confirmed in their submission that they would choose to have their case decided by a jury.
They argue that “the nature of this type of accusation of dishonesty is very damaging … on both personal and professional grounds.”
The defendants argued that they might be tried by the public and that it would affect their business dealings.
In February, the Election Commission said it believed the foundation “had received a donation that should have been treated as a party donation to New Zealand’s First Party”. The matter was referred to the police, and then the SFO.
Filing documents obtained by the Herald yesterday accused the two of depositing $ 746,881 in two bank accounts, including an account belonging to the New Zealand First Foundation between September 30, 2015 and February 14 this year.
The documents claim that the money was deposited with “the intention of defrauding the money donors, the party secretaries of the New Zealand First Party and / or the Electoral Commission”.
“The defendant used a fraudulent device, trick, or trick, in which the party’s contribution to the party was paid into a bank account [suppressed] and the New Zealand First Foundation and was not notified to the party secretary, or announced by the party secretary to the Electoral Commission, “the document alleges.
“Thus, the undeclared funds are available for [suppressed]/ New Zealand First Foundation to be used as desired by the defendants, and to be used to pay party fees and to develop a fundraising database for party and party interests. [suppressed]. “
New Zealand First Party leader Winston Peters questions the timing of the SFO’s decision to file the charges, which come a day before overseas voting begins and days before further voting begins.
The difference that the party was “completely separate” from the foundation would disappear on some sides, he said.
The foundation’s activities have been in the spotlight this year, whether it has been to lend or give money to the party for purposes that benefit the party and its MPs, and if so, whether it has been properly declared.
The party returns show that the registered foundation made loans of $ 73,000 to NZ First for 2017, $ 76,622 for 2018 and $ 44,923 for 2019.
RNZ reports that the foundation raised more than $ 500,000 in donations from April 2017 to March 2019.
During that period, the foundation reportedly spent more than $ 425,000 on campaign advertising costs, political consultancy fees, hiring and setting up campaign headquarters in Wellington, and running the party’s website.
This follows the resignation of party president Lester Gray last year after he refused to sign the party’s 2019 financial documents.
“This type of operation is incompatible with my moral values and business practices, and therefore I can’t support the party much longer,” Gray told Stuff at the time.