Opposition leaders back jirga’s demand for compensation of military operations’ losses

Mumtaz Alvi
Tuesday, May 28, 2024

ISLAMABAD: Senior opposition leadership Monday fully supported the tribal jirga’s demand for compensations to address the damages inflicted by military operations in the region, urging the government to honour its commitments made to the locals.

A delegation of the tribal elders from the South Waziristan comprising Wazir and Mehsud tribes called on senior leadership of the opposition benches in the National Assembly including Leader of Opposition Omar Ayub Khan, ex-speaker NA Asad Qaiser, PkMAP Chairman Mehmood Khan Achakzai and others here at the Parliament House.

The opposition leaders voiced solidarity with the tribal elders and vowed to raise their concerns on the floor of the house. The tribal elders apprised the opposition leaders of the objectives of their demonstrations and highlighted the problems arising from lack of compensation for the damages by the federal government: problems being faced due to ‘One Document Regime’ and the subsequent closure of Angoor Ada border.

The participants in the meeting jointly passed a resolution, underlining need to redress grievances, and launching joint efforts to provision of constitutional rights to the people of ex-FATA. The opposition leader endorsed their demands and vowed to raise their grievances on the floor of the house and advocate for their rights outside the assembly. The Tehreek-e-Tahaffuz-e-Aayeen-e-Pakistan leadership vowed to support the demonstration of the residents of Waziristan.

The elders urged the federal government to approve Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government’s demand for compensation and demanded allocation in this regard in the upcoming budget. They said that the tribes on both sides of the border had familial ties and restricting their movement by closing the border add to their miseries.

“The closure of the border is not just a logistical inconvenience but also a humanitarian issue. Families are being devastated and economic activities halted,” they regretted. They explained that due to the ‘One Document Regime’, students from schools, colleges, universities, and religious institutions had missed their annual exams this year.

Relatives have been unable to attend funerals. Emergency patients have been suffering without the ability to cross the border without a passport and visa. Omar Ayub said non-redress of concerns of the tribal people would erode their trust in the state.