Have no plan to part ways with federal government: Jam Kamal

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QUETTA:   (Parliament Times)    Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan has said that Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) has no plan whatsoever to part ways with the federal government.

“The BAP has neither announced nor decided to secede from the federal government. However, we have put forth our concerns before the Federal Government vis-à-vis the implementation of development projects being executed under the federal Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP)”, the CM Jam Kamal said this while talking to a delegation of Baluchistan Daily Newspaper Editors Council here on Tuesday. Speaking on occasion the chief minister said that these concerns were also in the knowledge of Prime Minister Imran Khan. He made it clear that the protest was PSDP-centric and there was no any other hidden agenda. “We will talk on the PSDP issue and the move is not in any way influenced by considerations of political advantage such as seeking ministries under the guise of the protest”, he said adding that the Federal Minister Asad Omar has assured that tenders for the PSDP projects would be held in September this year. As far as the Baluchistan’s share in NFC award is concerned he said that the NFC share for the province has a constitutional protection.

“Since the province has always been mired in traditional politics and no attention has ever been paid to reforms or infrastructure”, the Chief Minister said adding that previous governments wasted funds. Referring to the previous government’s incompetence and lack of interest in government affairs he said that the projects initiated in the late 90s were still incomplete. He said that his government has allocated Rs. 18 billion for the completion of unfinished schemes from 1997 to 2017.

The Chief Minister said that all sectors and all aspects have been taken into consideration in the budget for the next financial year. He said that such projects have been included that could be completed within two years.

The Chief Minister said that the incumbent government was focusing on increasing the resources and revenue of the province. During the current financial year, he said provincial resources have increased to a record Rs. 25 billion and a target of Rs. 45 billion has been set for the next financial year.

He said that the provincial finance department has invested Rs. 64 billion, which he said would generate an annual profit of Rs. 9 billion.

The Chief Minister said that the government was aware of the problems faced by students regarding online classes. The provincial government has issued instructions to the Education Department urging it to address students’ problems on priority basis. “The Higher Education Commission will also be asked to postpone online classes for a month to improve internet and communication connectivity in remote areas”, he added.

On the occasion, the Chief Minister assured the delegation of his commitment to resolve issues faced by the media industry. He said that the provincial government would raise the issue of granting 25% quota to regional newspapers with the federal government. The Chief Minister also assured allocation of funds for social media while announcing the provision of land for setting up of Media City in Quetta where media houses would be provided facility for setting up of offices. The delegation thanked the Chief Minister for his kind considerations and support for resolving the issues faced by the newspaper industry.