Election Manifesto of the Qaumi Watan Party (QWP)
The following is the Manifesto of the QWP, hereinafter the “Party”, for the Elections 2013. Derived from the detailed action papers of the “Party” on different subjects, the Manifesto is based on broad principles to guide the “Party’s” conduct if voted to power by the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Federally Administered Tribal Areas, Balochistan, Sindh, Punjab and all other areas of Pakistan, where the “Party” intends to place candidates to the national and provincial legislatures.
The manifesto consists of the following sections:
1. Comprehensive and Sustainable Peace
2. The Federation
3. Good Governance
4. Energy Crises
5. Economic Development
6. Urban Development
7. Social Sector Development
8. Women’s Empowerment, Youth, Labor and Minorities
8.1. Policy on Karachi
8.2. Problems of Overseas Pakistanis
9. Local Government Institutions
10. Cultural Development
11. Foreign Policy Principles
12. Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA)
Elections 2013 will have tremendous impacts on Pakistan and especially on the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, FATA and Balochistan. In the General Elections 2008, over four million voters in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA exercised their democratic right to vote; however, during the course of the previous five years, approximately equal numbers of people were either directly or indirectly affected and millions of them displaced at one time or the other. Voters in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa voted for progressive and liberal parties; however, the trauma of conflict on the population and the poor performance, bad governance, and the indifferent attitude of those in power towards the problems of the population have tilted the voters’ opinion towards regressive and religiously intolerant political groups. Keeping this in view, the “Party” considers it of immense importance to provide, through its well-thought out Election Manifesto, an action plan to steer the population out of this hopeless situation and incorporate the political views and aspirations of the moderate and progressive electorate.
To specifically address the concerns of Pakhtun masses, QWP was formed in October 2012. The “Party” strongly believes that indigenous and local solutions are more appropriate to address the prevailing problems. The leadership of the “Party” has all the necessary experience and in-depth understanding of the issues and problems of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the region, and it played a pivotal role in the Pakistan-Afghanistan Grand (Loya) Peace Jirga held in Kabul in 2007. The “Party” is a continuation of the courageous struggle of Shaheed Hayat Muhammad Khan Sherpao, who spearheaded the movement of the oppressed and disadvantaged people in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. His message of empowering the disadvantaged segments of society, achieving the rights of the smaller provinces, and their economic development still resonates in the hearts and minds of the people.
For the achievements of its goals of peace, democracy, rule of law and economic prosperity and equality, the “Party” strives, individually and in partnership with other democratic forces, to make Pakistan a truly democratic state that can stand with pride in the comity of nations.
1 Comprehensive and Sustainable Peace
The people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, FATA and Balochistan, that borders Afghanistan, have been specific victims of the vicious cycle of violence, under one guise or another, since the late 70s. This has severely undermined efforts of economic development in this region, giving rise to a war economy that threatens regional and global peace. There are multiple actors and divergent interests that are violently contested on the Pakhtun populated land. Given the complex context of the new regional and global rivalries, and the conflict in the border region, the “Party” will pursue the following policies:
1. Build a national consensus and a policy framework to identify the root causes of terrorism and militancy
2. Enable pro-active political and civilian-led initiatives to address the problems of violence, intolerance, and militancy
3. Build a political will to address causes of militancy and sectarian violence in Pakistan, appropriating all methods for this purpose
4. Promote a policy of demobilization and rehabilitation of all militants to be re-appropriated to the national mainstream through economic opportunities and skills development
5. Address all aspects of political and economic disempowerment that leads to intolerance and political violence
6. Establish a Trust Fund for the welfare of the victim families of terrorism
2 The Federation
Pakistan is envisaged to be a federal state in the 1973 Constitution, giving gradually greater autonomy to the federating units. Despite the 18th Amendment, a lot more is needed to make Pakistan a genuine federation that represents and empower sub-national diversities. The “Party” will pursue the following policies to make Pakistan a genuine federation.
1. New federating units should be created on the basis of public demand, administrative convenience, cost efficiency and cultural or linguistic similarities
2. All the grievances of the smaller federating units and all sub-national groups should be effectively addressed, especially in Balochistan.
3. Bold initiatives should be taken to revise the 18th Amendment in conformity with the concept of full provincial autonomy, in which only control over defense, foreign affairs, currency, communication and such other subjects that are agreed upon by the provinces, shall remain in the domain of the central government
4. Every province shall have the right and freedom to develop and promote their cultural and sub-national identities
5. Elections to the Senate are held directly and the powers of the Senate are enhanced, especially in matters of initiating money bills and approval of higher appointments to State institutions
2.1 Fiscal issues
The “Party” believes in the constitutional framework that determines the rights of the provinces on resources generated within the provinces. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is the biggest producer of hydel power yet despite constitutional guarantees, it remains deprived of its due share in the ‘net hydel profits’. The share of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was determined in the AGN Qazi Formula in 1991 yet the arrears of net hydel profits, decided through arbitration, were calculated
from 1991 – instead of 1973 – and only partial payments have been made by the central government to the province so far.
1. The calculation of future payments on hydel profits to the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa should be commensurate with the prevailing market rates that are negotiated with other IPPs in Pakistan
2. The “Party” will renegotiate the criteria of the NFC Award, keeping in view not only population but also special circumstances, under-development, and backwardness of a province
3. The “Party” will re-negotiate rates of royalty on natural gas in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
4. The “Party” will ask for additional resources from the central government to compensate for the damages caused by the Afghan conflict and the presence of Afghan refugees for more than three decades that have seriously impaired the natural resource base and infrastructure of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
3 Good Governance
1. The “Party” will initiate a three-tier good governance programme i.e. political, economic and civic governance to introduce institutional reforms for ensuring good governance practices through public participation, transparency, accountability and access to information.
2. The “Party” will address the issue of corruption and accountability for restoring the confidence of the public and international development partners. The current anti-corruption laws and systems are less focused on removing the causes of corruption and more on punishment of the corrupt. Anti-corruption laws and mechanism should be free, fair, impartial and independent to avoid vendettas and political victimization of opponents. The “Party” will work to establish financial and legal mechanisms that prevent the chances of corruption in public offices and
funds. The discretionary powers of public officials and representatives, that provide loopholes in the system, will be removed.
3. The “Party” will introduce structural reforms in the provincial public services to ensure improved service delivery to the people; and will undertake measures to increase public accountability of the public servants.
4. The “Party” will also introduce reforms in the Police department to make it more public friendly and service oriented. The capacities of the Police force shall be enhanced to deal with law and order and security issues in a more efficient manner.
4 Energy Crises
The people of Pakistan, their businesses and industries have been severely impacted by power and gas shortages and high prices. The “Party” will address the energy and gas shortages issues by pursuing the following policies:
1. By attracting investment in the energy sector mainly in hydel and coal-based sectors
2. The current ratio of 30:70 % (hydel:oil) will be balanced to 50:50%, which will improve the balance of payments due to oil imports
3. The current policy regime of oil and gas exploration in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will be eased out to encourage investment in oil and gas exploration
4. Transmission lines, grid stations and distribution systems will be modernized to reduce line losses and improve energy efficiency
5. The “Party” will diversify the energy production sector by tapping alternative sources of energy such as solar, wind, bio-gas, and bio-mass etc.
5 Economic Development
Economic realities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA are fundamentally different than the rest of the country. As a result it will require specific strategies addressing the needs of economic development of these areas. The “Party” will pursue the Post-conflict Needs Assessment recommendations (PCNA), will revise and improve the Malakand Comprehensive Stabilization and Socio-economic Development Strategy and the Sustainable Development Plan for FATA to rehabilitate the province and FATA back to normalcy. The “Party” strongly believes that for comprehensive economic development and national integration, regional imbalances in the allocation of development funds to the regions and districts within the province should be addressed. The Party’s economic strategy is based on the following five pillars.
5.1 Infrastructure development
5.1.1 Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Sovereign Wealth Fund
The “Party” will establish a “Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Sovereign Wealth Fund”. The equity for this Fund will be generated from hydel profits, donor agencies, and investments from overseas residents of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA. This Fund will invest in key infrastructure projects such as new hydel power generation units, gas powered electricity generation, and oil refinery and toll free roads. The “Party” will particularly focus on improved links between Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan through roads, rail and provision of electricity to the adjoining districts of Balochistan from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
5.1.2 Establishment of a New Business District in Peshawar
The “Party” will establish a new business district up to one thousand acres in the south or north of Peshawar. Seventy percent will be allocated to manufacturing/wholesale, fifteen percent to retail and fifteen percent to business offices. This new district will be connected to the east and west end of
Peshawar through secured express roads. Competitive advantages to businesses in the district will be ensured through cheaper electricity cost. This project will generate 30,000 new employment opportunities, including 3000 white collar jobs.
5.2 Employment and Wealth Generation
The public sector employment has saturated at the expense of cost efficiency. The “Party” will concentrate on facilitating the private sector to take the lead in employment and wealth generation by helping to establish a private venture equity fund and private equity fund. These funds will invest equity in new and existing businesses especially in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA. These funds will be helpful to:
1. Revitalize sick or closed industries or zones especially the Gadoon Amazai Industrial Zone, Hayatabad Industrial Estate, Kohat Road Industrial Estate, Charsadda, Aman Garh, Nowshera, Jehangira, Hatar Industrial Estate and Swat Silk Factories and others.
2. Develop the mineral processing sector as large scope exists to take advantage in the extraction and polishing of marble and gem stone
3. Set up special industrial zones in the oil and gas producing areas
5.3 Enhancing and Formalizing Regional Trade
Regional trade between Khyber Pakhtunkhwa/FATA, Balochistan and Afghanistan is informal and mostly undocumented. Although billions of dollars of goods are imported to Afghanistan through these areas, but the benefit of these activities are not shared by the majority of common people. The “Party” will establish three operational ‘export processing zones’ at Risalpur, Besham and Chaman or Kuchlak to specifically address trade with Afghanistan, Central Asia and China. These zones will create up to 60,000 direct or indirect employments and generate over one billion dollars in documented exports.
5.4 Human Resource Development
The immigrant and migrant workers from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA contribute almost 35% of total remittances sent to Pakistan. Unfortunately, overwhelming majority of these migrant and immigrant workers are employed in low-skilled jobs. The Party will overcome this challenge and turn it into an opportunity by establishing state-of-the-art technical and vocational centers for different age workers all over the province. These centers will be geared to provide education that addresses local and international market needs with a special focus on improving English language proficiency of the workers.
5.5 Land Utilization and Agriculture
1. Since 1926-27, land settlement in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has not taken place, giving rise to many issues of ownership, co-ownership, and landlords-tenants disputes. This has seriously impacted agricultural development in the province. The “Party” will take steps to modernize land records and establish ‘Land Disputes Arbitration Centers” in the province. This will address the issues of litigation arising out of land disputes.
2. The “Party” will promote a shift from traditional patterns of agriculture (low yielding crops) to production of high value edible oil crops like olives, and other items such as tea, fruits, maize and floriculture. Additionally, the Party will increase income generation from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s major crops i.e. maize and tobacco, by encouraging downstream industries for these crops.
3. To utilize about 2 MAF of water of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, new irrigation delivery systems will be designed and constructed in the province for bringing un-irrigated land into productive cultivation. To increase water-use efficiency, new technologies will be adopted. Additionally, a new
mechanism for soft agricultural loans will be devised to increase agricultural productivity especially for small and medium farmers.
4. The “Party” will establish a fruit processing and export zone in Balochistan to increase the revenues of the farmers.
6 Urban Development
For better development and changing the socio-economic structure of the region, the “Party” will undertake urban planning for centers like Mingora, Batkhela, Mardan, Swabi, Mansehra, Abbottabad, Charsadda Nowshera, Peshawar, Kohat, Karak, Bannu, Lakki Marwat, Dera Ismail Khan, Chitral, Drosh, Temergara, Zhoab, Loralai, Killa Saifullah, Chamman, Pishin and Quetta.
For better municipal services, the “Party” will also develop land-use policies in the urban areas. The “Party” will establish new townships schemes in and around major urban centers in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan.
7 Social Sector Development
Pakistan lags far behind than many countries to reach to the UN recommended expenditure on education. The UN recommends all member states to spend at least 4% of their GDP on education. Pakistan has not reached the MDGs (Millennium Development Goals) set forth by the UN in the education sector. The reason is that Pakistan spends only 2.2% of its GDP on the education sector. The “Party” will strive at the national and provincial levels to achieve at least the MDGs set forth by the UN.
1. The “Party” will strive that the current 2.2% expenditure reaches to at least 5% of the GDP
2. There are currently millions of out of school children in the province. The “Party” will make it mandatory that all out of school children gets enrolled in a school or an alternative literacy system
3. Education till Matric (Class-X) will be free and compulsory
4. Measures will be adopted to address low overall school attendances, gender and rural-urban gaps, and poor management structure in the education system
5. Higher education and vocational training and skill development programs will be re-structured to enhance the quality of education and improve management
6. Service structure of the teachers will be improved so that hardworking teachers are compensated for their good work
7. Hardworking teachers shall be rewarded for their good work in the shape of incentives, appreciation and certifications
8. To increase ownership and responsibilities of the communities, Parent Teachers Committees will be further strengthened to improve the quality of education in the public schools
9. The “Party” will strive for an equitable and uniform education system that meets industrial needs and conforms to local culture and international standards.
10. The “Party” will strive to improve the quality of education and introduce new learning methods and technologies, which promote creativity, analytical thinking and strong ethical foundations
11. In consultation with the private sector, necessary reforms should be introduced to ensure quality and equitable private education system
12. Soft loans/scholarships programs for talented and deserving students will be introduced to enable bright and under-resourced families to get access to quality education
1) The “Party” will introduce major reforms and better investment in the health sector.
2) Health expenditure will be re-planned to allow rural health centers and smaller hospitals get appropriate share.
3) Public-private partnership in the health sector will be encouraged to provide facilities to the far-flung areas
4) Health insurance schemes will be introduced for targeted segments of the population, which will be gradually increased.
5) Diagnostic centers/facilities in the District Headquarters Hospitals will be enhanced to enable patients have access to modern facilities at their door-steps
6) Along with the cure aspect, preventive aspect of diseases will be addressed by providing clean-drinking water and other hygiene programs
7) Quality and pricing of drugs/medicines will be effectively monitored
8) Special facilities on subsidized rates will be provided for senior citizens/handicapped persons/terrorism-affected families
9) Infant immunization will be increased from the current 60.5% to at least 80%.
10) The threat from HIV/Aids, Hepatitis and other major illnesses will be seriously addressed
7.3 Effects of Rapid Population Increase:
The Party will formulate a comprehensive policy to deal with the issue of rapid population increase and its effects.
7.4 Rural Development:
The Party will pay special attention to rural development so that rural areas can also have basic facilities which are in urban areas.
8 Women, Youth, Labor and Minorities’ Affairs
1. The “Party” will take necessary steps to ensure women’s rights and empowerment for their better role in the national processes and locally.
2. The “Party” will promote a minimum of 33% quota for women at all levels of responsibility and enable them to participate to meaningfully participate in the functions of the State.
3. The “Party” will take effective measures to address the issues of gender-based violence.
4. The “Party” will ensure that necessary steps are taken to achieve MDGs set forth by the UN regarding women’s rights and empowerment and that laws relating to women’s rights conform to international standards.
5. The “Party” will start career development and apprenticeship programmes for the educated and unemployed youth.
6. The “Party” will also initiate youth development programmes to enable them to play a greater and more effective role in the national affairs.
7. The Party will develop special skill development programs for the Youth, so that they can compete to get jobs in National and International Markets.
8. The Party will initiate a program of offering soft loans to youth to start their own business.
9. The Party will encourage Education and employment opportunities to special youth (Handicapped Youth) so that they can play their role in society.
10. The Party will initiate a special program to encourage Madrassas to teach social sciences and other Subjects so that they the students of these Madrassas can play a more effective role in Society.
11. The “Party” adheres to the international rights regime on labor rights; the rights of the workers to minimum wages, work hours, and benefits and will take effective measures to address the problems of workers/labor unions. The “Party” is against all forms of child labor will take effective steps to gradually abolish it.
12. The “Party “believes in equal rights of all the citizens of Pakistan without any discrimination on the basis of race, language, ethnicity, religious belief or any other identity. The “Party” will ensure that the life, property and rights of every minority are protected in accordance with the Constitution of Pakistan and they have equal opportunities to take part in the State institutions and national development.
8.1 Policy on Karachi
Karachi is the main commercial and financial hub of Pakistan populated by all ethnic and linguistic groups from all over the country. The “Party” firmly stands for a peaceful and prosperous Karachi. For this purpose the “Party” advocates and pursues the following policies:
1. Pakhtuns have significantly contributed to the development of Karachi and they have equal rights to have access to education, civic amenities, the right to get local domiciles, and employment opportunities
2. The “Party” strongly believes that the current political violence, target killings, and civil unrest is the result of pursuing short-sighted and limited political agendas and the “Party” will pursue policies, along with the political leadership of other ethnic/linguistic groups, to create an environment of trust and respect for all in Karachi.
8.2 Overseas Pakistanis
Pakistani expatriate community significantly contributes to foreign remittances sent from abroad. Unfortunately, the personal problems of the expatriate community are not addressed in an efficient manner. The “Party” will take steps to make accountable the Pakistani foreign missions/embassies to the expatriate communities for more effective services delivery to the expatriate community.
9 Local Government Institutions
The growth of local government institutions have remained victim to political interests and frequently changed policies. The “Party” will promote the growth of local government institutions along the following principles:
1. Increased community participation in planning and oversight of developmental activities
2. Increased revenue generation by local government bodies
3. Increased transparency and information sharing between citizens and State on developmental activities
4. Improved performance and citizens’ satisfaction about public service delivery by government institutions
5. Elections to the cantonment boards must be held regularly without further delays to address public grievances in the cantonment areas in a more democratic manner
10 Cultural Development
1. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is host to 70% of Pakistan’s tourism related sites. The “Party” will develop tourism sector based both on scenic and archaeological tourism for which there are many sites in the province, which will be an important source of wealth generation and will have a positive impact on the local population to get exposure to wider and cosmopolitan influences.
2. Security situation in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has seriously impaired and stunted the growth of cultural activities. The “Party” will ensure that cultural activities are promoted for creating a balanced and tolerant society.
3. The “Party” will establish an Endowment Fund for the welfare of artists, writers, and poets.
4. The “Party” will ensure institutional measures to promote cultural development.
11 Foreign Policy Principles
Due to its geo-strategic location, Pakistan has confronted challenges and opportunities in the region and internationally. The “Party” adheres to the following principles on foreign policy:
1. Condemnation of all acts of terror
2. Strengthening the role of regional alliances and cooperation
3. Resolution of Kashmir issue through peaceful means
4. Relationships that are more focused on trade and economic development and based on mutual respect to each other’s’ sovereignty
5. Building on Pakistan-China relationship for socio-economic development
6. Peaceful-coexistence with Afghanistan and other neigbouring countries and cordial and mutually beneficial relations with countries like Saudi Arabia, UAE, United States of America, the EU countries etc.
7. Promotion of Pakistan’s national interest through diplomatic means and special attention on the problems and interests of the expatriate community
12 The Federally Administered Tribal Areas
The isolation, extremely poor socio-economic indicators, and the impacts of decades of unrest in Afghanistan coupled with the political disempowerment of the FATA population have made the region a security threat. The “Party” will pursue policies that develop a more rational strategic vision for the FATA. More specifically the “Party” seeks to bring FATA in the national mainstream by adopting the following measures:
1. Any reform in FATA should be carefully formulated and gradually introduced in consultation with the local population
2. Local government system should be introduced in FATA to ensure peoples’ participation in developmental activities
3. Separation of executive and judicial powers in FATA
4. The Constitutional rights of the people of FATA should be at par with rest of Pakistani citizens and FCR should be reviewed in the light of national and international standards of administration of justice
5. Reducing non-developmental expenditure of FATA Secretariat
6. FATA should get special development packages to take affirmative action in bringing its poor developmental indices at par with the national figures
7. Special quota of seats should be allotted for FATA women in the national legislatures.
Election Manifesto of the Qaumi Watan Party (QWP)