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May 16, 2018

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ECP approves use of development funds, filling of posts

ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has granted a written approval to ministries/ divisions for utilisation of development funds and filling of project/contractual posts in accordance with PC-1 which were approved prior to April 1, 2018, The News has learnt.

In order to avoid pre-poll rigging, the ECP wants ban on execution of development provisions such as gas, electricity and water supply schemes under SDGs programme for which the Cabinet Division had already exhausted funding for the outgoing fiscal year in the range of Rs70 to 90 billion under all the discretionary programmes.

Just ahead of completion of tenure of outgoing PML-N-led regime, the ban on development funds and recruitment of posts has become a hot potato as there is lingering confusion over it in the context of ban imposed by the ECP on April 11 and then setting aside by the Islamabad High Court but again again re-imposed by the Supreme Court of Pakistan.

On clarification sought by Ministry of Planning regarding recruitment against contractual posts in development projects, the ECP explained that “it is clarified that if development projects were approved prior to 1st April 2018 and the project/contractual posts were part of PC-1 then recruitment against said post may be made”.

Taking this example as precedent, the different ministries/ divisions are now in the process for sending official communications to the ECP for seeking permissions in case of citing these examples on the same grounds.

“The Ministry of Planning is sending another letter to the ECP for seeking permission for specific projects which were already approved by the CDWP and ECNEC and these projects were not specific to any constituency but possessed importance at national levels,” said an official.

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