Tribal leaders have expressed mixed reaction over the announcement of local government system in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) by President Asif Ali Zardari.
Talking to reporters ,Member National Assembly from Bajaur Agency Akhunzada Chattan welcomed the decision and said that the announcement of introduction of local government system in tribal areas would boost political activities in Fata and improve standard of life of tribal people.
The introduction of LG system in Fata was a remarkable achievement of the people of tribal areas, he said and added that this system would bring the tribesmen into the mainstream of national life and their basic problems would be solved.
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz Bajaur Agency president Rahat Yousaf said that the introduction of LG system in Fata was good news for the tribesmen, who had suffered a lot due to Frontier Crime Regulation.
“The system would enable the people to make decisions locally about development of Fata,” he said.
Mr Yousaf added that the system would discourage mismanagement and corruption in Fata, which remained a big problem in the entire tribal areas. He hoped that the extraordinary powers of political agent would be curtailed under the LG system and all decisions would now be made by the elected representatives. However, tribal elder Malik Fazal Khan rejected the local government system, saying “It is like old wine in new bottle because this system has already failed in the tribal areas.”
He said that only provision of fundamental rights could solve the basic problems of tribesmen. He said that the LG system, which would be implemented from next year in Fata, had already failed in the country. Former MNA and chief of Salarzai tribe Shahabuddin Khan also opposed the LG system and said that it would create law and order problems in tribal areas.
Social worker Bahadar said the tribesmen had no interest in this system because they had already seen the efficacy of the Agency Council in 2004. “We want fundamental rights of tribesmen restored and extension of the Constitution of Pakistan to Fata,” he said.
Local leaders of Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf Mambar khan said that the LG system would benefit the tribesmen when the government would give them fundamental rights.