LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday issued notices to Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and Local Government Minister Aleem Khan over appointing Member Provincial Assembly (MPA) Shakil Shahid as Faisalabad Waste Management Company’s (FWMC) chairman.
The counsel for the petitioner Sheraz Zaka appeared before Justice Ali Qureshi and argued that the appointment of MPA does not only violate the Public Sector Companies Rules of 2013, but also is also contradictory to the pre-election stance of PakistanTehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on the 56 public sector companies.
It was further maintained that the companies supersede the rights of local governments as protected by Article 140 of the Constitution. Further, it was maintained that Shakil Shahid’s appointment is made on political grounds, rather than merit.
After listening to both the sides, the LHC directed the assistant advocate general to inquire the chief secretary about government’s position on the public sector companies and the plan of action for the future in this regard.
The court was adjourned till November 8 for the next hearing.
Earlier in June, the LHC had postponed the hearing in the same matter maintaining that before the court decides upon the matter, the new government after the 2018 elections should be given a chance to use its executive prerogative to decide whether they want to keep the companies or not.
It is important to note that prior to the elections, the PTI leader Mian Mehmood-ur-Rasheed in 2016 had filed a petition under Article 199 of the constitution as then opposition leader.
It was argued that companies created by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government violate Article 140 of the constitution.
It was further said that the appointment of civil servants and MPAs as directors of some companies be cancelled since they violate Public-Sector Corporate Governance Rules 2013.
Interestingly, several of these companies now fall under the control of party’s senior ministers including Local Government Minister Aleem Khan and Housing and Urban Development Minister Mian Mehmood-ur-Rasheed.