| GEO Pakistan|
| Manipulated voting, power transfer causing instability|
| Updated at: 2030 PST, Tuesday, July 07, 2009|
ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari today called for developing pilot e‑governance programs to computerise land records, ensure easy access to the people to critical government services and document financial and other records for greater transparency.
He said this during a meeting in which the Chairperson of Mahbub ul Haq Human Development Centre Dr. Khadija Haq, presented the Human Development in South Asia 2008 report highlighting the relationship of technology, e‑governance and human development in Pakistan.
Briefing the media, Spokesperson to the President Farhatullah Babar said the Election Commission had already been advised to study the available models of electronic voting in other countries and develop a plan for using latest technologies for ensuring free, fair and transparent elections in a smooth manner.
“Manipulations in voting and manipulated power transfer lay at the root of political instability that needed to be curbed through use of e‑technologies,” the President said.
The President said that e‑governance and e‑technology meant greater transparency which was resisted by vested interests.
To overcome this resistance, the President said a beginning should be made in Islamabad and in those selected areas where least resistance is expected to be encountered and then to replicate the model in other areas.
The Spokesperson said the President showed keen interest in computerisation of land revenue record. The President said that one area which needed special attention and must be documented properly was that of the land revenue record.
Documenting land revenue record, he said, will dramatically enhance public access to record, improve service delivery in all matters of land transfers and minimise corruption.
He said that e‑technology should also be used to provide people services ranging from payment of utility bills, to registration of documents and obtaining of passports in a short period of time.
Similarly he said online submission of grievances by people to the authorities will increase the comfort of the people who would not be required to travel long distances to file petitions with government departments.
“The use of e‑governance would not only ensure greater transparency and reliability but also improve the quality and frequency of people’s interaction with the government leaders besides ensuring speedy and efficient delivery of services.”
The meeting was attended by Muhammad Azam Khan Swati, Minister for Science and Technology, Ms Samina Khalid Ghurki, Minister for Social Welfare & Special Education, M. Salman Faruqui, Secretary General to the President, Dr. Ishrat Hussain, Ex‑Governor State Bank , Dr. Khadija Haq, President MHDC and Secretaries and senior officials of relevant ministries.
Ms Bakhtawar Zardari Bhutto, daughter of the President also attended the meeting by special invitation.
Minister for Science and Technology Muhammad Azam Khan Swati gave a briefing about the steps taken by his Ministry for computerizing its record and for providing online services.
Dr. Khadija Haq gave a presentation on the Human Development in South Asia Report 2008 and highlighted the relationship between technological advances and human development.
The President appreciated the report and the efforts of the Mahbub ul Haq Human Development Centre in highlighting issues of human development.