Home Latest News P.M. Sharif Withdraws Notification Appointing IRSA Chairman over Sindh Protest

P.M. Sharif Withdraws Notification Appointing IRSA Chairman over Sindh Protest

Appointment done under ordinance promulgated by former interim government to restructure IRSA

by Staff Report

File photo of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, courtesy PMLN

Just one day after appointing Zafar Mahmood as the Indus River System Authority (IRSA) chairman, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif withdrew his notification after the Sindh government protested the move as an attack on province rights.

In a notification, the Prime Minister’s Office announced its withdrawal of the previous order for Mahmood’s appointment as the IRSA chairman. Earlier in the day, Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah had contacted the prime minister, apprising him about a Council of Common Interests (CCI) decision that the IRSA chairman’s post should be rotated between the provinces.

According to a statement issued by Sindh Irrigation Minister Jam Khan Shoro, the prime minister had accepted Sindh’s stance and assured the chief minister he would withdraw the notification. Earlier, the Sindh cabinet had also expressed its reservations about the appointment of the IRSA chairman, maintaining it violated the water accord.

Speaking with journalists after the cabinet meeting, Shah said the purpose of establishing the water regulator was to ensure its functions were free from the center’s influence.

The issue arose because the chairman was appointed in light of an ordinance promulgated to restructure the authority by the former interim government. The Sindh government, however, objected to this, describing it as a violation of constitutional procedures. In his interaction with media, Shah noted that the caretaker government’s move had sought to sideline province rights and place all power with the prime minister, which was against the 18th Amendment.

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