Tag Archives: reform

Seek accountability reform | Instant News

The narrative in the public and political sphere points to corruption as the single most important barrier to governance and economic functioning in Pakistan. This narrative has not been born. This has been true in the field of government for decades now.

Many previous elections saw campaigns by major political parties accusing rivals of corruption and therefore did not deserve popular votes. Because of this centrality that leads to corruption and indecent behavior, the drive for accountability is felt at all levels of society. Recognizing this impulse, nearly every government in Pakistan has pledged to hold the corruptors accountable. And in fact, there have been several actions taken under the pretext of accountability. Unfortunately, none of them are spiritually correct.

In academia, not much has been written about the evolution of the accountability system in Pakistan. However, a brief overview of the accountability law was noted by the Supreme Court judge in the Khawaja Saad Rafique v NAB case. The School Committee Decree addresses the history of accountability law at length in paragraphs 64 and 65.

From the Public Representative Office (Disqualification) Act, 1949, to the 1999 National Accountability Ordinance, there are nearly a dozen laws (and amendments) on accountability. But nothing has effectively held anyone accountable. The ruling also illustrates that these laws are politically motivated and play a role in sacrificing opposition.

Interestingly, in a long history of government marked by changes between military dictatorships and civilian governments, these legislators were military dictators and “democratically elected” governments. So, there isn’t a single thing to blame for having done this in the past. Even those who claim to be champions of democracy today are those who have long been involved in this undemocratic affair. While Imran Khan and his PTI could argue that they do not set a precedent for a politically motivated accountability system, they are rapidly thriving in the business.

By separating all political discussion, in the current scenario, the problem is that the accountability process is not functioning effectively. Above all, the accountability institution has come under strong criticism from almost all levels of society except the government. It is important to understand that criticism never means that the accountability process must be abandoned, but requires reform for the process to be effective.

The main problem with the current accountability system is that it operates in a conventional fashion. The main laws governing the premise of the system have their roots in the 20th century, while the society in which it operates is the 21st. I have stated previously that the involvement of citizens and citizen-led civil society organizations is a modern trend in accountability that Pakistan can also adopt. This can make the accountability system effective and help the government shed light on the criticism it faces every day from various walks of life.

In short, reforms are needed in the entire accountability process to be effective. One way to do this is by adding a civil society aspect to the process, and by empowering and engaging citizen-led civil society organizations. A step in the right direction would make reforms in accountability legislation and create space for civil society to act for accountability. Another is that the right to information (Right to Information) law is made effective and works for civil society organizations to access accurate information in order to campaign for accountability. Similar systems in certain developing countries have worked well and are likely to succeed in Pakistan as well. Adding a civil society aspect to the accountability process is essential in the current paradigm of governance.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 14th, 2021.

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25 Fashion Items I Want To Make A Smile On My Face | Instant News

Sometimes I get stuck looking for a product for certain details of a story like the best base or hone certain trends, I forgot to peruse through the site and choose only what I like, no strings attached. As the weather gets warmer, I’ve been looking for fun items that only make me happy, and items that I know will wear me out for just that reason. After months of stopping my spending and just investing loungewearI’m ready to add an extra dose to my wardrobe, and my grocery list below reflects that exactly. Of course, I don’t have the funds to buy everything, so let me pass everything I observed below in case something interests you. Sharing is caring, right?

Keep on scrolling for funky prints, glass jewelry, beaded bags, and many more items that will carry compliments like there’s no tomorrow. Just making this list brings joy to my fashion-loving heart, so I hope it brings the same to those of you reading it.


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Cloud invites Opp to have a dialogue | Instant News

ISLAMABAD: Advisor to the Prime Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Dr Babar Awan on Saturday invited the opposition to dialogue on comprehensive electoral and institutional reforms. “The government wants dialogue with the opposition on political stabilization and democracy, for the provision of speedy justice, comprehensive elections, institutional and judicial reform and the right to elect Pakistani citizens abroad,” Awan said in an interview on Saturday. In a special talk with The News / Jang, Awan when revealing the dialogue agenda with the opposition said transparency in the electoral process was necessary. He said the government aims to carry out electoral reforms that can eliminate money interference in the Senate elections. He said the Senate election had been a joke and the government wanted to carry out electoral reforms that strengthen public confidence in democratic institutions. He said the government aims to introduce the law in its upcoming NA sessions, starting from Monday (March 29), to bring transparency in Senate elections.

“We are asking the opposition to come into dialogue with the government for the pending passing of the law and the government to introduce the bill and we are ready to accept the opposition’s suggestions for revision of the bill,” he said. He said the right to vote for Pakistanis abroad and e-voting would strengthen the political and democratic system. Providing speedy justice is the government’s top priority and for that the government submits a bill on judicial reform. “Likewise, we are working on the creation of a law for institutional reform, whereby decisions at the bureaucratic level will be made without unnecessary delay to resolve societal problems,” he said.

Responding to a question, he said the PPP had a stance to strengthen the democratic and parliamentary system through parliament and must now come forward to cooperate on laws. He said Prime Minister Imran Khan wanted initial legislation in parliament and in this case, all ministries and divisions had been activated.


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Government serious about working with Opp on electoral reform: Fawad | Instant News

ISLAMABAD – Science and Technology Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said Wednesday that the government is willing to cooperate with the opposition on electoral reform in a serious way.

Speaking to the media, the science and technology minister urged the opposition to support the ruling party for electoral reforms. He said that PML-N politics paid the price for his childish decisions. He said because of individual decision-making, one party had confined itself to eight Sindh districts while the second restricted itself to Punjab.

If the apex court pays attention to Sarina Issa’s petition, she will submit her reply to the Supreme Court, said Fawad Chaudhry. He said that it was very pleasing and positive that Maryam Nawaz was pursuing the legal path. He added that in his last performance before NAB, Maryam Nawaz threw stones at NAB.

He said the opposition used to comment before that the Prime Minister was not taking the initiative and now that Prime Minister Imran Khan has shown his seriousness about electoral reform, the opposition is showing the least interest. He said electoral reform was a serious problem; But the opposition did not take part in the Election Reform Committee meeting, which was held yesterday with the chairman of the National Assembly as chair.

The minister said that the opposition must show seriousness and take advantage of this opportunity.

Responding to PPP, he said Bilawal Bhutto Zardari had changed the Imam. He added that previously Maulana Fazlur Rehman was Imam Bilawal Bhutto and the new Imam Sarajaul Haq.

Commenting on Maulana Fazlur Rehman’s rhetoric about the corona vaccine, Fawad Chaudhry stated that the vaccine is not a fraud or corona, but Maulana Fazlur Rehman is a fraud.

Welcoming the ruling given by the Islamabad High Court on the election of the Senate Chair, he said the court had announced a decision on the application submitted by the Opposition.

Meanwhile, at the signing of the MoU between PEC and Chinese University Shinzua, Minister of Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry said that this agreement was signed to take advantage of Chinese technology. Bilateral cooperation between China and Pakistan takes place in various sectors. He said that Shinzua University is one of the top-ranking universities in China.

Universities play a very important role in transforming the economies of various countries. The university will build its laboratory in Pakistan, said Fawad Chaudhry. He said that Big Data is a market worth 49 billion dollars, he added

Commenting on the increasing market for electric vehicles, he said that in 2020 there were only 2.2 million electric vehicles which would increase to 20 million in 2021.

He also suggested that opposition parties adopt parliamentary forums to discuss issues of public interest.


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The government says it wants reform but wants another way to ‘steal elections’: Shahid Khaqan Abbasi | Instant News

Former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Wednesday launched a scathing attack on the government – particularly Prime Minister Imran Khan and National Assembly chairman Asad Qaiser – saying the rulers claimed they would undertake electoral reforms but were looking for “other ways to steal elections.”

Speaking at a press conference with PML-N secretary general Ahsan Iqbal and spokesman for the Marriyum Aurangzeb party, Abbasi asked where anyone would go when the machines were “taken away” or data made “disappear”.

He said the people who devised these methods were “those involved in election theft and who came to power after the most controversial election held in Pakistani history”.

Abbasi said it was “akin to a wolf raising sheep”.

“So this wolf said that the electoral system should be left up to them because they are reforming and an inter-parliamentary committee has to be formed,” he continued.

‘First arrest the person who kidnapped the chief officer and installed the camera’

Abbasi strongly criticized the letter written by PM Imran Khan to NA spokesman, which stressed the formation of a parliamentary committee.

In the letter, the prime minister also regretted how in the recent Senate elections, corrupt practices were allowed and money was thrown around.

Abbasi, referring to the letter, said a prime minister “who does not know the courtesy of parliament and he also does not attend his session has written to the speaker”.

He called the letter “two ignorant people writing to each other”, even though what it should be focused on had long been ignored.

The former prime minister said a month had passed but no action had been taken against the kidnapping of 20 chief officers during the NA-75 election in Daska.

“And these DPR members are writing letters to each other saying that the electoral system has been destroyed. It is always there. You have to catch the person who destroyed it.

“You have to catch the man who kidnapped the presiding officer in Daska and the man who stole the votes. You have to catch the people who put up the cameras in the Senate. You have to catch the people who appoint the presiding officer of the largest election institution – the Senate election,” Abbasi said .

He went on to say that the presiding officer “did not see the instructions that the stamp on the vote could be put anywhere in the candidate box on the ballot paper and had made the senate election controversial”.

“And now they’re talking about electronic voting machines.”

‘The speaker remains silent’

In further criticism, Abbasi said that all these reforms were sought from a parliament “which is barely functioning and does not respect parliamentary rules”.

“If the speaker knows parliamentary rules, [he would not have been a silent spectator] when the prime minister named five opposition leaders and vilified them. They are slandered and accused but the speaker has remained silent, “said the former prime minister.

“Who should join the speaker ‘s parliamentary committee? And how can they [conscionably] go? “he asked.

He lamented that the speaker “didn’t do” what the role was asked to do.

“If the speaker has the courage, he must remove that statement from the prime minister’s speech. This is his authority and responsibility. That is, if he has any respect for the rules and courage. If he wants to remain shameless and without shame. and get on with his work, then he can continue, “said Abbasi.

Speaking further about parliament and the debate within it, he said “there has been no talk of the people, inflation, sugar, wheat, electricity bills”, adding that it is a forum where “a voice to speak for the people is prevented”.

“The speaker stopped you,” he said, adding: “The speaker should be non-partisan and one who earns the respect of the opposition.”

He added that the speaker “is one who does not let the opposition leader speak and who does not see the front row empty seats”.

“The opposition leader is in prison who has no case against him and neither is the leader of the parliamentary party. But the speaker remains silent. The DPR guards remain silent.

“This is bad luck for the DPR. Who would believe such a speaker? Inside the assembly building, the crowd attacked six members but the speaker remained silent,” continued Abbasi.

The PML-N leader said the same day, an hour later, “the leaders of the DPR made a speech calling the names of opposition leaders in harsh words for them”.

“In fact he does not have the manners to call this incident a mistake,” he added.

“This is parliament. There is a committee available here. The speaker was supposed to have a committee hearing right away. Under his nose the attack happened,” Abbasi said.

The former prime minister alleged that the speakers also prevented the media from going to parliamentary lodges where the MNA and opposition senators live.

PDM has come ‘to fix this error’

Speaking about the Pakistan Democratic Movement, Abbasi said that the 10-party opposition alliance “has corrected this error in the system”.

“We have even stopped asking for production orders (from jailed leaders so they can participate in parliamentary sessions) although it is the speaker’s responsibility to ascertain this himself,” Abbasi said.

The PML-N leader said the speakers were, in effect, “denying the people’s right to their representatives to come to parliament and speak on their behalf”.

He said that although in yesterday’s meeting the PDM could not agree, “PDM is united and its success comes from the fact that talks behind the door are already in front of the people today”.

“So the PDM is determined to continue to bring the rule of law and the constitution back to Pakistan with the new government,” he concluded.


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