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JI Emir urges govt to reconsider its agreements with IPPs

JI Emir urges govt to reconsider its agreements with IPPs

ISLAMABAD, Sep 16 (DNA): Jamaat-e-Islami Emir Siraj-ul-Haq has urged the
government to reconsider its agreements with Independent Power Producers
(IPPs) and, if necessary, take the matter to the international court of
justice in the event of any hindrances.

Addressing the “National Energy Conference” in Islamabad on Saturday, he
also declared the JI’s intention to approach the Supreme Court to
challenge these costly agreements.

The JI organized the conference which was attended by power sector
experts, economists, and engineers. They highlighted challenges and
forwarded recommendations.

Haq emphasized the urgent need to complete the IP Gas Pipeline and
expressed disappointment over the government’s inability to resist
external pressures, particularly from the United States, which have
impeded the import of affordable fuel from neighboring countries.

He lamented that the government was seeking approval from the
International Monetary Fund (IMF) even to allow struggling consumers to
pay their hefty bills in installments, asserting that the nation’s
sovereignty had been compromised at the hands of international lending
agencies and foreign powers.

He criticized the former government for implementing power generation
projects solely for political gain, disregarding their cost implications
on the financially vulnerable. He questioned the rationale behind
choosing imported coal-based projects when domestic coal resources were
available, and why projects reliant on imported oil were constructed far
from the sea, incurring unnecessary transportation expenses.

Haq urged the government to shift its focus from sending high bills to
consumers towards addressing the billions lost due to line losses and
power theft. He pointed out that the ruling elite benefited from free
electricity, resulting in significant losses to the national treasury,
while the burden fell on the impoverished citizens.

Highlighting past administrations’ negligence, he condemned their
failure to invest in hydel electricity generation and other
cost-effective energy sources, such as wind energy, which could have
yielded thousands of megawatts. He called for accountability of the
influential figures behind the costly IPP projects, asserting that the
nation deserved transparency regarding the purposes and realities
surrounding these projects.

He underlined that people in the country are grappling with inflation,
unemployment, and poverty due to flawed policies adopted by previous
governments. The caretakers, he said, gave continuation to the former
policies instead of providing relief to the masses.

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