Gilgit, July 25: According to various private TV channels the cabinet of Northern Areas Legislative Assembly (NALA) has been dissolved and the chief executive made ineffective. The six advisors have also been removed their offices.
Fresh elections for the NALA are expected to be held during October/November, this year and the dissolution of assembly, apparently, is a move to allow the political parties time for election campaigning.
The PPP regional party chiefs had said that upcoming elections would be held under the new proposed constitutional package, expected to be announced by the Prime Minister during a visit to the region. The date for the visit has not been disclosed and neither has there been any official news in this regard.
Preparations for the elections are already underway in the region, as various parties have drawn lines, campaigning along nationalist and federalist ideologies. The ex – cheif executive Ghazanfar Ali Khan, had recently said that the nationalist parties are likely to over shadow the federalists in the 2009 elections, while talking to Daily Times.
The performance of this cabinet alwasy remained under criticism despite of its elevation to the status of a legislative assembly, at least on paper. The chief executive and advisors always were seen shedding tears over “lack of authority” or “independence of making decisions”. Durig the last five years of this cabinet’s presence at the helm of whatever power they possesed, they were unable to maintain law and order in the region.
The murder of Agha Zia Ud Din, on January 8, 2005 sparked fresh sectarian tension in the region, leading to muder of dozens of people, including several high government officials. Recently, the deputy speaker of NALA, Syed Asad Zaidi, was also murdered in Gilgit, reflecting complete inability of the government to ensure law and order in the region.
Expansion of the KKH is a project that started during the last five years, but the inability of public representatives to mobilize the public or advocate the cause for compensation of land used inthe project also remained heavily criticized.