The two orders signed by President Asif Ali Zardari were Amendments in the FCR (2011) and Extension of the Political Parties Order 2002 to the Tribal Areas. President Zardari signed the important documents here at Aiwan-e-Sadr in the presence of a number of representatives from FATA, besides Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani, Chairman of Senate Farooq H Naek, Speaker of the National Assembly Dr. Fehmida Mirza, KPK Governor Massod Kausar and Chief Minister Ameer Haider Khan Hoti, and federal ministers.
The President signed the summary just an hour after it was received from the Prime Minister. The signing ceremony was held in the jam-packed hall of the Presidency which was witnessed by tribal elders drawn from all the seven tribal agencies, five frontier regions, FATA parliamentarians, provincial cabinet of KPK, diplomats, representative of Shaheed Bhutto Foundation, civil society members, mediapersons and representatives of a number of NGOs.
Spokesperson to the President Farhatullah Babar said that representatives of various political parties, who had earlier formed a multi-party Joint Committee on FATA reforms, also witnessed the signing ceremony. The Committee members had called on the President in March this year urging for early implementation of the promised reforms.
Speaking on the occasion President Asif Ali Zardari said that his head bowed in gratitude before Allah Almighty for having fulfilled yet another promise made with the people of FATA. He congratulated the tribesmen for harmonizing reforms with their tribal customs and traditions.
He said the legal and political reforms would rid the tribal people from a century of bondage and usher them into mainstream of national life while respecting local customs and traditions. The President said some may say that the reforms are not enough and much more needs to be done adding “Let it also not be forgotten that no one even took a single step in the last one hundred years to reform the FCR and give political rights to the people”.
President Zardari responding to the demand for making FATA a province said that making a province was not a simple process. The President said national consensus was required to make a new province and added that the government would decide on this issue after consultation with every one and after creating consensus on it.
He also assured the people of FATA that if possible, the government would provide more funds for the development of their area.