98% of FDA budget to be spent on liabilities only

Peshawar: Going by the tradition of allocating just ten per cent of the FATA budget to FATA Development Authority FDA, 98 per cent of its budget will have to be spent on throw forward liabilities and with the remaining just nominal two per cent only two new schemes can be conceived.

The taking up in hand of these two new schemes cannot also be ensured because during the present financial year i.e. 201213, a total of Rs.1340 million had been allocated to it in the budget, of which just Rs.1181 million had been released.

This was informed in a briefing to the parliamentarians from FATA by the Chief Executive of FDA Fida Wazir in Islamabad on Monday. Majority of the MNAs and Senators actively participated in discussing various issues raised during the briefing.

The participants were also informed that fund allocation was always made to FATA on the basis of resource specifics and not demand specifics but even then due to constant shortages of funds, delays occurred in execution of different development schemes and given the cost escalations, the throw forward liabilities were piling up.

This year such liability is Rs.5.4 billion against the total expected allocation of Rs.1658 million for the upcoming financial year i.e. 201314, they were told. It was also informed that 10 development schemes were due for completion which required Rs.178 million but the expected allocation was just Rs.56 million.

The two new schemes related to industrial estate in FR Kohat Phase-II, and the other related to mineral development respectively with an allocation of Rs.10 million and Rs.20 million.

With regard to the FDA programme of skill development initiatives in FATA it was informed that “unemployment is the main problem” there and though the FADA is not only imparting training of different skills to the people of FATA and help the so trained personnel in getting jobs but this seems to be too little a contribution to resolve the whole miss.

It was therefore, decided that the government would be asked for increasing the budget of FDA and also an assurance for timely release of the funds so allocated.