Govt decided to give more powers to NCA
17 June, 2016
ISLAMABAD: The federal government, in consultation with the military leadership, has decided to give more powers to the National Command Authority (NCA), the most reliable national institution, which controls and regulates all affairs of Pakistan’s nuclear and strategic programme.
In this regard, the National Assembly Standing Committee on Defence would take up the NCA Amendment Bill 2016 in a few days, with committee chairman Sheikh Rohail Asghar in the chair. The amended ordinance was presented to the lower house of the parliament earlier and now the standing committee would consider it as a bill.
According to the sources in the Ministry of Defence, the amended bill would increase the scope of the NCA. The ministry has also suggested some amendments to the law governing the NCA.
To make the NCA independent with regard to use of funds, it has been suggested in the amended bill that the federal government should provide funds to the authority in local and foreign currencies through the Strategic Plans Division.
Federal Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif said in a statement that NCA employees were not civil servants and the legal relationship of the authority with its employees would be governed by the doctrine of master and servant. He said the proposed amendment should prevent abuse of legal process in respect of affairs of the state. Recently, Senator Farhatullah Babar of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) called into question the manner in which the ordinance to amend the NCA was tabled in the Senate. Senate Chairman Raza Rabbani said that question might be asked why the ordinance promulgated on March 13 this year took the government 92 days to table it in this House and 91 days to table it in the National Assembly.