Time for performance has arrived, Imran tells his ministers

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has said the PTI government has to take its performance to much higher levels in the remaining time of its five-year tenure, while telling his ministers that “the time for performance has arrived”.

Khan said this while addressing a special ceremony to sign ‘Performance Agreements of the Federal Government for the Year 2020-21’ in Islamabad attended by ministers and special assistants to the prime minister, the Dawn reported on Wednesday.

According to the Prime Minister’s Office, federal ministers of various ministries signed performance agreements with the prime minister.

“We will put pressure on ourselves to take our governance performance to much higher levels in our remaining two-and-a-quarter years,” Khan said.

“We no longer have an excuse that we’re new and are learning because most of us came into power for the first time. The time for performance has arrived,” he added.

Terming the signing of performance agreements “a step in the right direction”, Khan said the performance of each ministry will be evaluated based on the contracts.

“After all, the public has to decide after five years whether we made their lives better or not; whether we fulfilled the promises made to them or not,” he said, stressing that governance could not be delivered unless all ministries performed individually.

Noting that presidents and prime ministers in the US and UK were given detailed briefings about all government departments before they took office, Khan said he virtually had no time to prepare before assuming office and the first three months were spent understanding the state of affairs.

Among the government’s current targets, the Prime Minister said he saw the power ministry as the biggest challenge for the country and his government, which he said sometimes “keeps me awake at night”.

“The power sector is such a complex and complicated sector; there are so many different things that need to be rationalised and synchronised to provide people with affordable power and not add to the rising circular debt,” he said.

He said although some factors concerning the power sector were in the government’s control, others were not.

Khan termed subsidies worth Rs 2,500 billion as the second biggest challenge for his administration, noting that all countries provided subsidies to benefit the poor and to uplift their backward areas.

Mentioning wealth creation as the third test for the government, he said if exports were not increased, the issue of current account deficit would remain.

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