Northern Areas To Have LG System
20 October 2007
Islamabad: President Pervez Musharraf has approved Legal Framework Order (LFO) on devolution of power at grass root level and introduction of Local Government system in Northern Areas. The President accorded approval to LFO while presiding over a high-level meeting held in Rawalpindi on Saturday. Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Northern Areas, Maj (r) Tahir Iqbal, Deputy Chief Executive Northern Areas, Mir Ghazanfar Ali and high-ranking officials also attended the meeting. The meeting reviewed a host of development projects for Aorthern Areas, matters related to LFO, Hydro Power projects and other schemes. Addressing the meeting, President Musharraf said Aorthern Areas would be brought at par with other parts of the country in terms of development and quality of life of the people of these areas will be improved. Talking to Online after the meeting, Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Northern Areas Maj (r) Tahir Iqbal said work was under way on formulation of LFO for installation of local governments in Northern Areas adding 'we have given detailed briefing to the President in the meeting in this respect. The President has appreciated it, he indicated. He maintained powers will be devolved at grassroot level in Northern Areas with the enforcement of LFO. Powers which rested with Minister for Kashmir Affairs as chief executive will be transferred to deputy chief executive and elected local representatives. Final draft of LFO will be presented to the President in the next meeting, he added. Tahir said the President had issued orders for renovation of Skardu, Gilgit airports. PIA flights for Northern Areas will be enhanced to attract tourists, he added. The President had held out assurance in this connection, he informed. He went on to say dozens of uplift projects were being run in northern areas in collaboration with Asian Development Bank. These projects included hospitals, schools, roads and other schemes, he added. He hinted work was in progress on fast track basis on completion of mega hydro power projects to overcome power shortfall in northern areas.