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> 4 per cent of the GDP to be devoted to Education by 2015: Federal Education Minister
   PILDAT Consultation with Parliamentarians on Education for All in Pakistan
Consultation Session
January 29, 2009
Serena Hotel, Islamabad


Islamabad, January 29: 4 per cent of the GDP will be devoted to Education by 2015, the Federal Minister of Education announced today at a PILDAT Consultation. Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani, Federal Minister for Education was Chief Guest at the PILDAT Consultation with Parliamentarians on Education for All in Pakistan that was organized in association with United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization - UNESCO.


The Consultation session was organized as a follow up of All Parties Conference (APC), held last year February 05, 2008 where 17 political parties of Pakistan signed a joint declaration and pledged to bring positive changes in the education sector by taking action on eight strategic points. Senator Razina Alam Khan, Chairperson Senate Standing Committee on Education, Ch. Abid Sher Ali, Chairperson National Assembly Standing Committee on Education, Senior Minister of Education from Sindh; Pir Mazhar ul Haq, Provincial Minister of Education from Punjab; Mian Mujtaba Shuja ul Rehman, Provincial Minister of Education from NWFP; Sardar Hussain Babak and Ch Javed Ahmad Advocate, Chairperson Standing Committee on Education, Provincial Assembly of Punjab, attended the session at special invitation. Parliamentarians from major political parties, education experts and the media took part in the consultation.


In his opening comments, Mr. Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, Executive Director PILDAT recalled the pledges made in the APC. Dr Maurice Robson, Director UNESCO gave the introduction of the goals of Education for All in a special context to Pakistan. Being a signatory of DAKAR Pakistan needs to work on legislation for primary education as a fundamental human right on emergency basis, he said. The provision and allocation of budget in education sector should be more precise and should at least be 4% of the total GDP.


Pir Mazhar ul Haq described the plight of education in Sindh and sought the help of federal government to improve the state of education. He further added that education in mother language should not be ignored. Mian Mujtaba Shuja ul Rehman talked about the progress being made during one year of the PML-N government. His points of discussion were seconded by Ch Javed Ahmed Advocate, who said that even though the government of Punjab is committed to the cause of education, decisions such as budget allocation and syllabus definitions rest with the Federal Government. Sardar Hussain Babak raised the issue of burning of girls schools in Swat and insisted that this act should not just be condemned but solid and urgent steps are required to stop such inhuman actions. Senator Razina Alam Khan appreciated the efforts of PILDAT to arrange the platform for legislators to develop consensus on issues of prime importance like education.