PPP to resist bid to roll back 18th amendment: Raza Rabbani

Islamabad: Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) central leader Senator Raza Rabbani Monday announced to resist every bid to roll back the 18th amendment.

Raza Rabbani said in a statement that some political parties were planning to roll back the 18th amendment in the guise of empowering local governments (LGs).

“We will resist every bid to roll back 18th amendment in and outside the parliament. It seems that major political parties, rulers and the World Bank (WB) have a similar agenda to curtail powers of the provincial governments in the name of a central resource distribution plan.”
Rabbani saw the discussions on 18th amendment as an ongoing attempt to dissolve the present provinces and establish new provinces on an administrative basis.

The PPP leader warned that a plan was in making to establish new provinces on an administrative and fiscal basis besides the revision of the resource distribution mechanism.

Rabbani predicted that the National Finance Commission (NFC) Award would be entirely changed after the establishment of new provinces. Some powers were playing with fire and it would bear severe consequences to the federation, he warned.

Earlier, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari had claimed that ‘conspiracies are being hatched against the 18th Amendment.’
Bilawal Bhutto said that the centrifugal mindset to run the federating units as colony still persists,” The PPP workers will not allow any harm to the provincial autonomy,” the party chairman said.

“Transfer of unbridled presidential powers to the parliament was the vision of Asif Ali Zardari,” Bilawal said.

The 18th amendment was promulgated in April 2010, curtailing the president’s power to dissolve the parliament unilaterally and granting self-governing and financial autonomy to the provinces.

PPP politicians started claiming about unannounced plans being formulated behind closed doors to change the 18th amendment for curtailing the powers of the provinces’ self-governing and financial autonomy.