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Event Title: Mayor briefs Senate Special Committee on Islamabad

Event Date: 2020-03-03

Senate Special Committee on Islamabad to review and examine jurisdictional issues between Capital Development Authority (CDA) and Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad (MCI) and suggest a course of action to address the issues in its meeting heard Mayor of Islamabad, Capital Development Authority and ministry of Interior about this running conflict between two institutions that is undermining the good image of Islamabad and is adversely affecting lives of citizens.

The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed here at the Parlaiment House on Tuesdaya and was attended among others by Senators Dr. Shehzad Waseem, Barrister Muhammad Ali Saif, Mayor Islamabad, Member Finance CDA, Joint Secretary of Ministry of Interior and officials from relevant bodies.

The Committee was briefed that the jurisdictional issues exist between not just CDA and MCI but also involve ICT administration under the Chief Commissioner. It was told that under the act 22 departments of CDA were completely transferred to MCI and 15 were partially transferred which meant that the control is still jointly exercised by CDA and MCI in those areas. As a result out of a total of 18735 CDA employees, 10430 have been transferred to MCI, 5728 are partially transferred and remaining 2965 will stay with CDA. However, despite the division being mentioned in act and notifications by the ministry of interior the division has not been properly implemented so far which is resulting in the existing problems. Similarly the MCI has not been allocated any budget since its coming into existence and the salaries are still being paid by CDA.

The Committee members raised questions as to whether the act provides anything about the source of funding and income for the MCI and whether subsequent rules have been formulated yet by the concerned departments yet. The Committee was surprised to know that even after five years there have been no rules of business because the particulars of division of assets, human resource, functions and departments is not finalised.

The Committee observed that whenever there is a division of assets in any form it has to be done in the legal framework mentioned in the act and not be done on basis of any consequent notifications or mutual consensus and the root cause of the problems seems to be stemming from the lacunas in act and overlapping jurisdictions in terms of functions and departments. It was pointed out that objective cannot be achieved just by transferring the instrument unless the management and functionality is also transferred.

The Committee had a considered view that Senate is the House of Federation and Islamabad Capital Territory which is the centre of this federation should be governed in a manner not just of good governance but also of excellent coordination between different departments. He said that this committee will be pivotal in resolving the tug of war between MCI and CDA which is causing problems for residents..

Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed said that the Special Committee on Islamabad wants to listen & learn from all the relevant stakeholders, and this meeting highlighted a number of problems like overlap among functions of various departments, lack of clear administrative jurisdiction, financial grey areas, as well major legal lacunas, since the new structure for the Federal Capital seems to have been cobbled in a hurry. The current politicisation of Federal Capital issues is an unfortunate and unnecessary by-product of these core issues, with the result that residents of the Federal Capital are suffering due to lack of efficient delivery of basic services.