Thatta Coastal community project at stake
Courtesy: Daily Dawn, 11-8-09
THATTA, Aug 10: The Sindh Coastal Community Development project was at stake due to unnecessary delay in recruitment of staff, Dawn learnt through reliable sources here on Monday. The Asian Development Bank-assisted project of $40 billion was launched in November 2008.
It meant for the uplift and improvement of socio-economic conditions of coastal population of Thatta and Badin districts, incorporating mangroves planting over 3,000 hectares by the government, 200 fish pond development schemes, rehabilitation of three hatcheries, small and medium scale community and government-managed interventions.
The project was to be implemented over a period of six years from 2006 -07 to December 2012. However, unnecessary delay in the recruitment on 109 posts from grade 1 to grade 19 caused to stop the project.
Sources said that at a meeting held on July 10, 2009, the ADB country director made it clear that the project would be cancelled if recruitment was not completed soon. Minister for Economic Division and Finance Hina Rabbani Khar wrote a letter to the Sindh government in the last week of July to take on staff within one month, otherwise the project would be withdrawn and no project would be given to Sindh in future. Reports said the Sindh CM had issued directive to constitute a committee to start recruitment and advertise vacancies in the newspapers, but the bureaucrats were deliberately not complying with the directives.
Ministers, MNAs and MPAs of the two districts were silently watching the tussle between bureaucrats and top politicians of the province.
But the ultimate sufferers will be the underprivileged, deprived and poor coastal communities who had high expectations about facilities such as roads, culverts, small bridges, elevated plate forms, schools, hospitals, boats, cold storages for fish and shrimp and other financial options, besides plantation of mangroves in the coastal belt.
The local population has appealed to President Asif Ali Zardari to help implement the project.