Young Parliamentarians discuss Policy Issues Related to COVID-19 and the Constitutional Journey on Provincial Autonomy


December 3; Members of the National Assembly of Pakistan belonging to the Young Parliamentarians’ Forum (YPF) were given a detailed briefing today on the Policy Issues faced by Pakistan related to Covid-19 and Pakistan’s Constitutional Journey on Provincial Autonomy at a virtual capacity building session organised by UNDP-PILDAT in collaboration with UNFPA and Government of Canada.

Speakers at the Virtual Capacity Building Session included Mr. Fahd Husain, Resident Editor Dawn (Islamabad) and Mr. Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, President PILDAT.

In a detailed presentation, Mr. Fahd Husain, renowned journalist and resident Editor Dawn, Islamabad, briefed the participants on the policy challenges faced by Pakistan during the Covid-19 pandemic. He shared with MNAs that the Education and Economy were worst hit areas and the fallout will be experienced in the days to come. The number of out of school children will also increase as their parents are not able to pay the fees of the schools as their income suffered due to the pandemic.  He emphasised on the parliamentarians that they should make the Parliament more effective in dealing with the pandemic. Parliament should debate the reports of the and seek opinion from the experts.

Mr. Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, President PILDAT, provided a detailed historic and constitutional journey of Pakistan on provincial autonomy. He shared how Pakistan’s demand was based on provincial autonomy and self-governance of Muslim-majority areas and how the constitutional journey of Pakistan was shaped largely by the demand of provincial autonomy. In a data-rich presentation, Mr. Mehboob discussed that the journey is ongoing even though 18th Amendment to the Constitution has changed the nature and quantum of provincial autonomy but a conversation and deliberation on it must continue.

Ms. Uzma Riaz, MNA, General Secretary YPF, thanked PILDAT for arranging an informative briefing session and termed the session as extremely informative. She also said that YPF members require more and more informed capability-building sessions, and hoped that such sessions will also be conducted in person in the future as the coronavirus pandemic eases

Following members of the Young Parliamentary Forum attended the virtual session:

  1. Shazia Sobia Aslam, MNA (PPPP), Member YPF
  2. Nasir Musazai, MNA (PTI), Member YPF
  3. Uzma Riaz, MNA (PTI), General Secretary YPF
  4. Romina Khursheed Alam, MNA (PML-N), Member YPF
  5. Dawar Khan Kundi, Former MNA