By Nilofer Qazi
With the local bodies elections planned in Islamabad I thought it would enlightening to speak to a candidate before the elections and ask her a few questions on my mind. Since there is little information available thus far why not ask the candidates themselves. I hope to be able to ask similar questions from other candidates vying for seats in Islamabad. Today I ask Seemi Ezdi a woman standing for chairman of UC 42 which is sector f/10 in Islamabad what are some of her views:
- Question: how many sections is Islamabad been divided into for the local bodies election?
Ans: Islamabad has been divided into 79 Union Councils
- Question: who & how did they choose areas divisions ?
Ans: They divided the areas according to population
3.Question: how many members are running for F/10 UC? What is the profile of these candidates and positions?
Ans: Only after August 3rd when the government announces schedule , will we know who all are running from F10/2-10/3 UC
4.Question: why is there no minority position in f/10 UC?
Ans: Because there is no significant minority population in F10 to have a representative.
- Question: the recent block of the elections scheduled for July 25th, what were the issues behind this? And has it been resolved? When is the elections scheduled?
Ans: Local Government Bill had not been passed by July 25th by the Senate , hence elections could not be conducted
7 Question: who are your opposition candidates?
Ans: Once elections are announced then only we will know for sure who our opposition candidates are.
- Question: what will be the scope of your duties if you are elected?
Ans: a) Chairman/Chairperson will provide leadership for Budget preparation and annual development plan .
- b) Present the Budget in the Union Council
- c) Represent the Union Council in the Metropolitan Cooperation.
- d) Report to the concerned authorities in case of encroachment on State or Local Govt property (b) building laws and by-laws (c) adulteration of food articles .
- Question: why is it as a citizen of Islamabad I have little or no knowledge of my candidate, their campaign or information about the elections?
Ans: You have no knowledge of campaigns as the campaigns have not started as yet .
10 Question: what will your local bodies team consist of? How many of you will there be? And what will your work entail?
Ans: The Local body team will consist of a Chairman/ Chairperson , Vice Chairman, 6 General Members, 2 Women Members , 1 Youth , 1 Labour ie 12 members in all.
I have already mentioned the functions of UC above
- Question: do you have a campaign message? What is it?
Ans: We believe in and will work for good governance and community welfare .
- Question: how many are there in your ‘constituency’? how are you reaching out to them? Have you met most of them?
Ans: Each UC has a population of 10,000 voters.
We are reaching out to them through social media, by door to door campaign and personal references etc
- Question: the idea of party based or non-party based what is the real difference? Every party actually supports a candidate don’t they?
Ans: Party based elections ; only one panel for each party which can openly solicit the party’s support and use it’s symbol.
Non-party based elections ; candidates cannot use party symbol , symbols are issued to them by the Election Commission . Each party can have more than one independent panel .
- Question: how does the Party help your campaign?
Ans: The party can help our campaign by activating its grass root workers and provide guidance .
15 Question: how wills a multi party union council in Islamabad work together coherently? Are the rules and legal systems in place now for your guidance? Is there any training planned for newly elected candidates?
Ans: There is no information of training programme as yet .
The draft bill is available with the rules and legal systems but it has yet to be passed ,once it’s passed and becomes law then only we can have proper guidelines .
A multi party union council will work according to the rules and laws of the LG Bill .
16 Question: your Brother Jahangir Tarin is a members of PTI and holds a senior party position. Do you think members of one family in elected office is appropriate? Didn’t PTI promise in its manifesto it would not encourage such a trend in its #nayapolitics?
Ans: I joined PTI three years before my brother did and have since then worked at the grass root level.I also participated in Intra Party elections , then I was Coordinator IDPs Relief Aid Programme since June 2014, when Pakistan army took action against terrorists and Zarb e Azab was initiated, an influx of refugees inundated KPK. I visited Bannu , Karak , Peshawar ,Abbottabad, Mansehra ,Bakka Khel camp, Pishtakhara camp and Jallozai camps many times with relief goods .Hence the ticket has been awarded to me in view of my services to the party since 2008 and am committed towards the making of Naya Pakistan . InshAllah.
17 Question: what are some of the things that you would like to do for Islamabad.
Ans: What I would like to do for Islamabad is a cleanliness drive, better waste management, discourage the use of plastic bags as they are not bio-degradeable
and not Eco friendly.Well maintained grounds and parks is very important where children can play freely.Then I would like to start a tree plantation drive for a greener Islamabad.
Another very important thing is a standby ambulance for each union council and my dream is to have a fully functional local library to introduce good reading habits in people again .
18 Question: many say there are no real Islamabad everyone’s an outsider what do you say to that?
Ans: I agree Islamabad is a multi cultural city ,everyone has come from a different part of Pakistan, but that’s the beauty of it , there is unity in its diversity .I think the real Islamabadites are our children who were born and grew up here .
19 Question: what is the budget of your campaign? Is there a legal cap? Who finances the campaign?
Ans The campaign budget for Chairman cannot exceed more than Rs 100,000/ Each candidate will finance it’s own campaign.
20 Question: Islamabad is made of 72? Villages the original inhabitants of pre Islamabad area. What kind of demands do they make? I think they fall under part of your constituency?
Ans: Islamabad has been divided into 79 UCs.There are no original inhabitants of F10/2-10/3 UC 42 as F10 is a newly developed area .
21 Question: what are some of the issues you consider to be important that you would like to focus on?
Ans: Important issues of my UC 42 that I would like to address, have been dealt in answer no 17
22 Question: does it make any difference being a women in active politics? Has it brought to light any issues for you?
Ans: PTI has awarded only three tickets to women candidates as Chairperson and I am grateful for the party’s trust in me .So far I have had no issues. In fact being a women it is easier when we do door to door campaign as people don’t mind women coming into their homes.
23 Question: how will CDA function within the local bodies system?
Ans: The functioning of CDA within the Local Body system has not been ascertained so far . We are waiting for the bill to be passed to see the placement of CDA vis a vis the LG system.
- Question: how should your constituents access you? Do you have website/telephone number/PA/office.
Ans: UC will have its own office and website etc once the members are elected and take charge of their own duties.
25 Question: there are two MNAs in Islamabad how will your UC interact with them?
Ans: Each MNA has their own prescribed UCs so there isn’t going to be any confusion regarding the domain of any MNA.
26 Question: there is a discussion on that there will be a Mayor of Islamabad. What will be the role and powers of this office?
Ans: I think the candidate vying for the Mayor seat is the right person to answer this question
27 Question: how will financial devolution occur in the local bodies system? What kind of taxes if at all will your office raise?
Ans: Each UC will be collecting taxes as well as spend on development works which is a good example of financial devolution .
– There will be fees for registration of births and marriages ..
– Fees on services provided by local government ..
– Entertainment tax as well as Community tax will be levied
28 Question: where should citizens of Islamabad look for more information about the upcoming LB elections?
Ans: For more information citizens can read The Islamabad Capital Territory Local Government Bill, 2015.