The government has decided to launch a two-year special development programme titled Wazeer-e-Azam Qaumi Taraqiati Program, 2016-18, scheduled for completion prior to the General Elections 2018.
Federal Cabinet, in its meeting to be held on Wednesday (tomorrow), will accord a formal approval to the programme.
Cabinet Division, in its summary, seen by Business Recorder, said that Pakistan has lagged behind in the achievement of 34 indicators of Millennium Development Goals and Targets (MDGs) in comparison to other countries of the region.
Pakistan was on track on ten (10) indicators. Pakistan’s progress towards MDGs was influenced by slow growth world over and natural disasters, man-made conflicts, institutional, administrative and political changes in Pakistan.
The global community adopted sustainable development goals (SDGs) consisting of 17 goals with 169 targets and 304 indicators covering a broad range of sustainable development issues.
These include no poverty, zero hunger, good health and well-being, quality education, gender equality, clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy, decent work and economic growth, industry innovation and infrastructure, reduced inequalities, sustainable cities and community, responsible consumption and production, climate action, life below water, life on land, peace, justice, strong institutions and partnerships for the goals.
The provincial governments have been invited to join the programme by providing required resources in order to achieve the SDGs agenda. The Federal Government would provide funds on a matching grant basis in a ratio of 1:1.
A Steering Committee with the following composition would be responsible for overall supervision of the program: Minister for Parliamentary Affairs, Sheikh Aftab Ahmed (Chairman), Captain Muhammad Safdar(retired)(member), Senator Saud Majeed( member), Secretary Cabinet Division(member), representative / focal person of the Ministry of Finance (member), representative of Planning Division (member), and representative of the Controller General Accounts (member). One member can be co-opted.
The terms of reference (TORs) of the Steering Committee are as follows: (i) ensuring implementation of the programme through PIU as per an approved policy and GIS mapping; (ii) monitoring progress of the programme and review its impact assessment; (iii) resolving the issues during implementation process of the programme; (iv) ensuring speedy release of funds and resolve issues relating to financial aspects of the programme; (v) clearing schemes for execution; (vi) determining, in case of participating provinces, whether a given scheme is to be executed through EPC contracting by the PIU in Cabinet Division or through Divisional Implementation and Coordination Committee.
In the latter case, the federal and provincial shares of the funds shall be transferred to the SDA of the Commissioner concerned and the DCIC shall have the scheme executed through appropriate federal, provincial or local executing agency.
In case the Steering Committee decides to proceed with a project in an EPC mode, the Project Implementation Unit (PIU) shall be the client and undertake the contracting function; (vii) determining, in case of non-participating provinces, the appropriate executing agency and having the scheme executed there from after releasing funds direct to the executing agency; (viii) preparing and submitting cases of schemes costing more than Rs 30 million to the Prime Minister and in case of approval; and (ix) deciding on any other matter related to the programme.
The schemes would be entertained for execution of Prime Minister’s Sustainable Development Goals Program / Wazeer-e Aza Qaumi Taraqqiati Program 2016-18 subject to policy/guidelines at the time of identification in the following sectors:
POWER SECTOR: (i) electrification schemes and (ii) rehabilitation of electricity distribution infrastructure.
GAS & NATURAL RESOURCES: (i) missing gas infrastructure subject to availability of gas, duly certified by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources.
SOCIAL SECTOR: (i) construction of new schools, up-gradation or uplifting of existing schools, including provision of missing facilities and (ii) construction of new BHUs and RHCs, up gradation and uplifting of existing facilities, including provision of missing facilities.
MUNICIPAL SECTOR: (i) water supply schemes & filtration plants; (ii) urban sewerage, sanitation and rural drainage schemes; and (iii) communal facilities including but not limited to graveyards and public parks.
INFRASTRUCTURE SECTOR: (i) construction and of rehabilitation of farm to market roads and (ii) construction, repair or rehabilitation of roads (district or provincial).
In case of participating provinces, the funds would be provided on a matching grant basis in the ratio of 1:1 by the Federal and Provincial Governments.
A Program Implementation Unit (PIU) would be set up in the Cabinet Division for the implementation of the program, under overall supervision of the Steering Committee.
The PIU, headed by the Secretary, Cabinet Division, would be equipped with IT and management professionals to oversee and monitor the execution of schemes across the country. The facility of video conference would also be utilized for the purpose.
The composition of PIU would be as follows: Secretary Cabinet Division, Additional Secretary Public Affairs Unit, Prime Minister’s Office, Joint Secretaries 02, Deputy Secretaries, 02, Provincial Coordinators, 04, and support staff,08 along with requisite management, IT, legal and engineering professionals.
Each participating provincial government may propose a Provincial Steering Committee (PSC) which may be headed by the Chief Minister or a Minister, appointed by the Chief Minister from amongst the members of the provincial Cabinet.
There would be a Divisional Implementation and Coordination Committee (DICC) in each division of the participating provinces.
It would be convened by the concerned Commissioner and would comprise 2 MNAs, 2 MPAs, 3 notables and 2 elected heads of local governments from within the division.
All the DCs/DCOs, divisional heads of provincial and heads of Federal Executing Agencies at the appropriate level would be ex-officio members. The Director Development would be Secretary of the DCIC.
The TORs of the Committee would be as follows: (i) collection/identification of schemes from members of the community, initial vetting having the rough cost estimates prepared and sending the schemes for clearance by the Programme Implementation Unit (PIU) with a copy for information to the PSC; (ii) preparation of PC-I and administrative approval by appropriate forums after receiving cleared schemes from the PIU; and (iii) execution and supervision of works for all schemes within the division.
PIU would employ a resident consultant for each Division in the participating provinces who shall work under the direct control of the Commissioner and DCIC concerned.
Necessary notifications regarding formation and constitution of DCICs and PSCs shall be issued by the PIU, after approval of the Steering Committee.
Funds from the participating governments shall be placed by the Finance Department and the Finance Division in the Special Drawing Account of the Commissioner concerned, who shall make payments direct to the contractors and vendors, after verification by the executing agencies and resident consultants.
Ensuring quality of execution of the works shall be the responsibility of the Commissioner concerned.
The PIU may employ a consultant for third party audit and verification of at least 50% schemes undertaken under the program.
The funds shall be packaged Division/District wise. The minimum size of individual schemes, in terms of costs, shall be Rs 2.5 Million.
The development schemes over and above Rs 30 million shall be approved by the Prime Minister. Only new schemes may be executed under the programme and as such no past unfunded scheme would be included.
At least 15 residents of an area or civil society organization would make a request for intervention in the given sectors at an estimated cost of a minimum of Rs 2.5 million and a maximum of Rs 30.0 million.
This request shall be forwarded to the concerned Commissioner or Federal executing agencies for processing.
The Commissioner or relevant executing agencies would forward the request to the concerned executing agencies for technical feasibility and cost estimates.
The proposal would then be submitted to the competent forum such as DDWP/PDWP/CDWP for approval.
The competent forum while issuing an administrative approval of a scheme would, inter alia, certify that the scheme is/are feasible and in public interest.
This fact shall be duly reflected in the minutes of the meeting. It would then be submitted to PSC/ PIU for approval and release of funds.
In order to avoid duplication and mismanagement of funds, the Commissioner would certify that no other agency has undertaken or is undertaking the same scheme in the area.
Land for the purpose of development scheme(s) where applicable, shall not form part of the cost estimates of the scheme. In case private land is offered by the community, its mutation in the name of designated government agency shall be effected prior to execution of the scheme.
With regard to schemes involving recurring costs, the concerned provincial government shall affirm that it shall bear such costs.
Since the schemes are community based, there shall be no substitution/ addition/ deletion of schemes once funds are released.
Physical work shall start after fulfilling all codal formalities and the executing agencies shall ensure that the schemes are completed within the stipulated time and at the approved cost (preferably during 2016-17 and in exceptional cases during 2017-18 after approval of PSC).
PPRA rules shall be followed wherever applicable. Commissioner / Executing Agencies shall be responsible for ensuring transparency and quality of work and furnishing monthly progress on physical work and utilization of funds to the PIU.
Schemes identified for a specified financial year shall be completed within the same year. No cost overrun will be admissible and no cushion shall be available to meet any extra cost on any account. Additional funding/throw forward will not be permissible.
Lapsed funds in one financial year shall not be recouped in the next financial year. Allocation of funds for execution of development schemes shall not be incurred on purchase of equipment, vehicles, fixtures, salaries, printing of diaries / calendars / banners, holding of official meetings and dinners / parties etc.
Similarly, no administrative overheads shall he charged by any agency for execution of the schemes.
The Commissioner/Federal Executing Agencies shall prepare completion certificates on PC-IV proforma within three months of the project completion and shall send copies to PIU.
Funds utilized on the schemes under the programme shall be subject to normal accounting and audit procedures of the Government of Pakistan.
Adjustment Accounts / Audited Statements of the schemes shall be furnished by the respective Commissioner/Federal Executing Agencies.
The Cabinet Division will release funds for development schemes on the recommendation of Steering Committee. -Business Recorder