Local bodies elections, in relation to present change

Local bodies elections in relation to present tabdeeli (change) in Pakistan.

The local bodies play a key role in translating the vision of any democratically elected true government into reality. This means transfer of power at the lowest tier.

Electing the popular and deserving contenders, desirous of making a go for it, is the first target. From ground and up there are going to be members in a village council and councilors, from one particular council. The winner shall than become the chairman. Correspondingly, bigger the area bigger becomes the constituency for a contender vying to be the mayor or a Tehsil Nazim. Bigger cities will have the mayor’s, and Tehsils their Tehsil Nazims. Smaller towns will be governed by the chairmen accordingly.

During General Musharraf’s regime the formula of devolution of power meant decentralization of administrative authority, was put into play successfully. It did translate his vision into some visibly solid tangible progressive mode of governance. The District Nazim could make a man a woman, woman an eunuch. This was to overcome all Kafkaesque problems in the realization of goals that they set before themselves and the timely delivery of services accordingly. However, before Musharaf, the predecessors in corporations encountered problems in the running of affairs.

The old fashion of governance through the bureaucrats was to be done away with.

Mian Haroon Masood Political Leader, Pakistan

When he lay the foundation of devolution of power plan practically every thing centered around the District Nazim, as he was thought to be the main fountain of power which he actually was. The old fashion of governance through the bureaucrats was to be done away with. Thus, a new era dawned upon the local populace, with the DCO and the DPO looking up to the locally elected Nazims for their ACRS. The governance at the local level was best at play. The Nazims being the nucleus of power. The district Nazim being the focal person who remained the fountain of power.

I have been a part of that set up both as a convener and the Tehsil Nazim of my Tehsil Gujrat. In an erstwhile District nazimship all Tehsil Nazims were independently governing their tehsils accordingly. Yet, they fell under the District Nazim making him no less than the Governor of the District.

I would like to draw the attention of Imran Khan to a fact which could be the basis for the success or failure of his government in the upcoming local bodies elections.

The donor agencies like Jica are always willing to co-operate, provided there is some sensible person in the driving seat who could make his case and present it to them.

Mian Haroon Masood Political Leader, Pakistan

The pre-requisite for any bigger slot in a district must be filled in by BA, Intermediate, and Matric pass nominees. Without this pre-condition the whole system will be steamrolled. Since, a chairman, a mayor or for that matter a tehsil Nazim are to manage affairs at a bigger level having all the officially appointed people working under them. It is thus imperative to invoke the clause of education. Without this all shall turn topsy turvy, but by bringing in parhe likhe log [educated people], half their problems would be solved from the very outset. The donor agencies like Jica [Japanese money lending agency] are always willing to co-operate, provided there is some sensible person in the driving seat who could make his case and present it to them.

I don’t believe in blowing ones trumpet, but within that brief stint, I had introduced the concept of solid waste management. It was 2001. We were rather ahead of times. Through help of a private company Waste Busters, we began changing the conventional system of waste busting. As a private company, the contractor was able to identify ghost workers who always managed to bounce back perpetually in the old system of municipal services either by hook or by crook. Single-handedly, I struggled for the better of my tehsil. Incidentally I was managing the affairs in the house which was a representative body of 92 members. A cross section of people. I enjoyed the support of the entire house for I made sure I could address the problems of the worthy members. I was reprimanded from my party leader for being too cordial with the people on the other side of the fence. I embraced many challenges, but moved on my only intention was the good of my tehsil. I was offered gratification.

My honesty and sincerity with the party and my city could never win me the favour of my leaders that I worked under. I bore the brunt of other people's misdoings. Have been held account to also. I remained steadfast.

Mian Haroon Masood Political Leader, Pakistan

I never accepted a penny, how could I have? Otherwise I would have berated myself. That is the only reason I have always stood up to the other guy, looked straight into his eye and said whatever I intended saying, along the journey I had the unflinching support of the Naib Nazims from across the aisle. Come elections after the death of our tehsil Nazim Ch. Sarwar Booch, I was told that the time was up. My honesty and sincerity with the party and my city could never win me the favour of my leaders that I worked under. I bore the brunt of other people’s misdoings. Have been held account to also. I remained steadfast. It took a great toll on me.

In my achievements, I got a unanimous resolution passed over the establishment of a university in Gujrat. Got the private addas [like bus stop] of transport into running after they were once shut down and closed. By the order of Brig Ahmed the martial law administrator back then, had the taps installed to the 30 turbines for consumption of clean drinking water for the public at large. Bought a filth site for the first time in the history of municipal services. That was the only solution in those dire circumstances without spending a single penny of the government. Had several ambassadors to come and pay us a visit, thereby, opening more avenues for bilateral trade.

My principled stand over certain legal matters became my major impediment. Successively for three terms I was not considered because I had still not given up upon my so-called self style purist idealism.

Mian Haroon Masood Political Leader, Pakistan

Introduced the long awaited step towards tackling waste, by inducting mechanical arm rollers. I galvanized almost the entire tehsils assembly into becoming a worthwhile assembly bringing up matters of public interest. The sessions would last for hours on an end. I managed the affairs with perfect ease although a lot went into it.

My principled stand over certain legal matters became my major impediment. Successively for three terms I was not considered because I had still not given up upon my so-called self style purist idealism. Hence with me the city and the tehsil also suffered. Personally I felt agitated, exasperated. My heart burning was more than ever and I could see the city going down. It has been a good 16 years since I have been sidelined. I think I could have done wonders but, then they say the grave yard is full of indispensables.

I am proud of being born to my family, my parents. I loved my dad, and my uncle who was a giant and not a pygmy. Someone worth grieving over. He was a fearless man. He had charm, he had charisma and undying love of people for him. It was the local members through local bodies who in turn chose Mian Akbar late to be the member west Pakistan assembly. He won by a huge margin. The lion roared across the District. I am only trying to establish the link and love of the people for Mian Akbar’s family who still want to see us doing better for the city. We hail from the city, we are not aliens. The time is ripe. The Prime Minister is another man who gives hope and vision who leads by example.

Our association with late Ch. Zahoor Elahi’s family dates back over 5 decades. We have rendered unwavering support to our leaders. We have also worked in and day out and during this time came a time when we had to pitch candidates for general elections, and let me tell you clearly, our relentless work paved way and it laid down for the success of four MPAs and MNAs of our group: Ch. Shafaat Hussain, the zilla Nazim and myself, we worked day in and out.

No time for worthless people who would do your bidding and bring bad name to you. They have gobbled up enough of the national wealth now.

Mian Haroon Masood Political Leader, Pakistan

Imran Masood, my brother, he relinquished his seat to help foster an alliance between the PMLQ and PTI. PMLQ and PTI both won. Together they could still pave way for the good of the District Gujrat by bringing people who have self respect. People with unquestionable repute. Those with experience should be brought in from across the divide. It’s not a dynastical rule. Remember it’s going to be about the men who matter.

No time for worthless people who would do your bidding and bring bad name to you. They have gobbled up enough of the national wealth now. It’s more a question of saving national assets I need to tell my party. We are men of honour. We don’t wanna break away from you. Injustices can’t continue to happen. The ball is in your court. Allah make me do whatever is best in the interest of my family, my party and in the interest of my great city.

Injustices can't continue to happen. The ball is in your court.

Mian Haroon Masood Political Leader, Pakistan

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