Islamabad November 17, 2015: Former President Asif Ali Zardari has congratulated all political parties and people from tribal areas for holding a rally in front of the parliament house on Monday demanding reforms in the tribal areas.
In a statement today the former President said that it was heartening to note that the reformists are not longer limited to FATA but there is across the board consensus on carrying out reforms and bringing FATA under some constitutional cover. I wish to compliment in particular the ex-MNA of PPP Mr. Akhunzada Chattan and all those who organized this rally and drove home the need for reforms in FATA.
To be durable and acceptable the reforms in FATA must be internally driven and in the first step those measures be adopted on which there is unanimity of the tribal people and a broad consensus among the political parties, he said.
He said that the reforms process undertaken by the previous government introducing changes in the FCR as well as allowing political activities in the tribal areas while at the same time respecting the customs and traditions of the people needs to be carried further forward.
He said that the Constitution recognized FATA as part of the territory of Pakistan but denied fundamental rights to its people by blocking the doors of superior courts for the people of tribal areas. This dichotomy has led to a serious disconnect between tribal areas and the rest of the country that needs to be addressed.
Zardari said that he had already addressed a letter to the Prime Minister urging him to get the constitutional amendment bill opening the doors of superior courts to the people of FATA passed from the Parliament. The Bill has already been approved by the Senate Standing Committee representing all political parties.
He said that the security situation in FATA will improve when the tribal people were made stake holders in the governance structures of FATA through directly elected local governments that are also duly empowered to carry out functions. He also called for a clear cut policy and time frame for the return of the temporarily displaced person to their homes to resume their normal lives.