SC orders Balochistan govt to give powers to elected LB representatives

ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court (SC) while giving two weeks’ time to Balochistan government to enact law for delegating powers to Local Bodies (LB)  members of the province has ordered  that Balochistan government should formulate law within two weeks or give powers under ordinance otherwise court will decide the case as per law.

A 3-member bench of SC presided over by Chief Justice (CJ) Anwar Zaheer Jamali took up the case for hearing Wednesday.

The lawyers and representatives of all the four provinces, cantonment and Islamabad informed the court about implementation of transfer of powers orders.

One petitioner told the court one year has been elapsed after holding of LB polls in Balochistan but neither the powers have been transferred nor have the funds been provided.

Government prosecutor took the plea that the process of transfer of power has started in Balochistan and Islamabad.

Secretary local government Khyber Pakhtunkhwa told the court that powers have been transferred to elected representatives under the law.

Counsel for Punjab government told the court that legislation process pertaining to powers of local bodies members in the process and powers will be transferred after the election phase is completed.

The court expressed displeasure over non-transferring of powers to local bodies members by Balochistan government despite lapse of one year and give time of two weeks to transfer the powers to the representatives of people elected during LB polls.

Counsel for Balochistan government told the court that “draft is ready. Assembly session has not taken place, therefore, bill has not been approved so far.

CJ Anwar Zaheer Jamali remarked “bill is of no significance unless it is approved by parliament. The powers have not been given to elected representatives even after completion of LB polls in Balochistan. Why the powers have not been delegated to elected representatives within a year.

Justice Amir Hani Muslim remarked “if assembly is not in session then promulgate ordinance. Provincial government has two weeks’ time. If nothing is done in two weeks then court will exercise its powers.

The court while dismissing the plea for staying the use of local funds till the completion of process of transfer of powers adjourned the hearing of the case till second week of May.

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