Planning and Development Secretary, Shoaib Siddiqui spoke to a journalist recently, mentioning that there is a shortage of human resources at the Planning Commission.
The Planning Commission is playing an important role in China-Pak Economic Corridor (CPEC) and the Vision 2025 document, and they still have a huge shortage of labor.
Only 1 Full-time Project Director Is Available
The PC, which is in charge of overseeing the CPEC, needs around 33 full-time project directors to carry out their tasks efficiently while providing quality.
Due to the sensitive nature of their projects, which cost Rs. 500 million each, they need one full-time project director assigned to every project.
“Human resource is our big problem,” Says the planning and development secretary, Shoaib Siddiqui.
According to him, all the vital projects were currently being handled by part-time subtitutes, the chief or deputy chiefs on a “look-after” basis. The chiefs and deputy chiefs are working on these projects, on top of their normal everyday responsibilities.
This definitely results in demotivation and burdening of these workers, resulting in poor quality of work done.
The Vital Functions of the Planning Commission
Major initiatives, such as the $56 billion worth CPEC fall under the Planning Commission’s workload. They are also working on the 12th five-year plan (2018-2023) that would need the National Economic Council’s (NEC) approval, alongside the next year’s annual plan.
All the important projects of both CPEC and Vision 2025 are handled by the Planning Commission, and most of these projects don’t have a full-time director assigned to them.
Why Don’t They Have Enough Manpower
According to Mr. Siddiqui, the deficiency of experienced manpower is simply because of low salaries offered by the government. The commission also hasn’t made new recruitment for many years.
The Commission has 8 top level positions, and 6 of them are unoccupied.
He added that the Commission is now filling these vacant spots and that Deputy Chairman Sartaj Aziz is now personally involved in the process of interviewing and choosing suitable candidates.
Mr. Siddiqui highlighted the problems they faced because of poor consultants.
“The consultants are not playing the role they are required to.”
The consultants are supposed to check if the work done in the project is meeting the set standards and approvals. They also have to submit reports periodically to the government, apprising them of the work done so far in these projects.
Mr Siddiqui mentioned that he was forced to join hands with different consultants such as EA Consulting, Nespak, ECIL and AA Consulting to carry out work for the Commission.