Coronavirus pandemic: SC expresses displeasure over federal, provincial govt’s performance

The Supreme Court (SC) on Monday expressed dissatisfaction over the federal and provincial governments’ performance in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.
A larger bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Justice Gulzar Ahmed on Monday resumed hearing of the coronavirus suo motu case.
Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Mazhar Alam Khan Miankhel, Justice Sajjad Ali Shah and Justice Qazi Muhammad Amin Ahmed are also the part of the bench.
As the hearing went underway, the CJP questioned the federal health secretary about turning Haji Camp into a quarantine centre.
“Who turned the Haji Camp [in Islamabad] into a quarantine centre?” asked the CJP, to which the secretary health said that the National Disaster Management Authority ordered made quarantine centre at Haji Camp.
“How can billions be spent on the purchase of masks and gloves? If there is an audit, things will become clear.”
The Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed expressed dismay over the absence of National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) officials. The bench also grilled the deputy commissioner of Islamabad over the lack of facilities in quarantine centres in the federal capital.
“There is no transparency in anything… You people are spending billions of rupees, but no one knows what is happening,” the CJP remarked.
“Things will only become clear when we conduct an audit of the expenditures on coronavirus measures,” the chief justice remarked.
The CJP Gulzar has also asked NDMA to submit a report about the expenditure of coronavirus foreign funding. “A report should be submitted in next hearing about how much foreign aid was received and where it was distributed,” he remarked.
The SC also directed to open all clinic in Peshawar by adopting the standard operating procedure (SOP). The top court also sought reply from Centre, provinces over corruption in Baitul Mal and Zakat funds.
Hearing of the case was adjourned for two weeks.
On April 17, the Supreme Court (SC) had formed a larger bench to hear suo motu case related to the situation arising from the coronavirus outbreak in the country.
It is pertinent to mention here that the Supreme Court (SC) in its last hearing had expressed dissatisfaction regarding the progress of the Centre and the provinces to curb the spread of coronavirus pandemic.

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