The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) Assembly referred the issue of amendment to the Public Service Commission (PSC) Act to the concerned committee on Monday. If the amendment is approved, government departments will no longer need No Objection Certificates (NoC) for temporary appointments.
The issue was raised by Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) parliamentary leader Abdul Akbar Khan through an adjournment motion. He told the house that the provincial assembly had passed a bill sometime back, which allowed government departments to make temporary appointments on vacant positions.
He said the aim of this bill is to make timely appointments in hospitals, colleges, schools and other departments till the PSC appoints regular candidates. The NoC was made a requirement by then K-P governor Lt. Gen retd Iftikhar Hussain Shah in August 2002. Shah made his approval mandatory for all appointments from scale 11 to 15 and added the NoC requirement.
MPA Khan said due to this clause, government departments cannot make appointments because the commission delays NoCs for months, which causes more problems. The PSC in K-P has more power compared to the federal level, which is unique to the province.
He said the federal public service commission makes appointment on vacancies of scale 16 and above, while the commission in K-P was doing the same for scale 11 to 15 as well, which is adding more to its workload. He proposed that the K-P PSC act should be amended to rectify these issues.
K-P Law Minister Barrister Arshad Abdullah also agreed with Khan. Abdullah said the government had overhauled the commission’s structure previously. He admitted, however, that the NoC restriction is causing problems. He proposed that the matter should be referred to the concerned standing committee where members will try to forge a consensus on these amendments. Speaker Kiramatullah Chagarmati referred the matter to the standing committee for further deliberation.
Abdullah also assured that the government will look into the K-P Group Insurance Bill, which was tabled by Akbar around a year and half back. The house referred three questions submitted by lawmaker Syed Murid Kazim Shah about appointments and other issues in the health department of DI Khan district after no opposition from the treasury benches.
The treasury benches defended the additional charges given to certain senior officials in different projects of the provincial government, after PPP lawmakers questioned these appointments.
The assembly also unanimously passed the K-P Universities Amendment Bill 2013, K-P Services Academy Bill 2013 and Travel Agencies Amendment Bill. The assembly session was adjourned till Tuesday afternoon.