Fata Future Governance Model: Do Stake Holders Represent Public Sentiments?
Author: Siddiqa Ali

Tribal areas of Pakistan (commonly known as FATA i.e. Federally Administered Tribal Areas) is in the focus since long for many reasons including war-on-terror, Afghanistan War etc. These areas have unique history as administrative unit. During British era, it was not proper part of British India rather it was a buffer zone between British India and Afghanistan. After emergence of Pakistan as an independent state; it was included in Pakistan though, but with the same colonial administrative, legal and judicial set up under Frontier Crimes Regulations – 1901. It was Bhutto regime which gives it the status of federating unit with the name FATA as per article 1 of 1973 Constitution of Pakistan but with same governance structure, although it was the first regime which tried to reform this structure in 1976 but due to 1977 Martial Law, did not seceded. President Laghari in 1977 extended adult franchising provisions to FATA. In 2011, President Zardari extended Political Parties Order 2002 to tribal areas. In November 2015, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif constituted the FATA reforms committee which presented its report in August 2016. The committee was then converted to implementation committee in December 2017. Due to many reasons, the federal government was reluctant to implement the reforms. In this connection Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2018 / 30th Amendment Bill 2018 was debated a lot but to no avail then all of a sudden in May 2018, the last week of its tenure, the federal government in haste presented, and new Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2018 / 31st Amendment Bill 2018 from Parliament. It got presidential assent, and was made act of parliament i.e. 31st Constitution Amendment abolishing the special status of FATA and merging it with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa – KP. In this scenario, this study aimed at (i) to know that what are the opinions relevant stakeholder and general masses about future governance model for tribal areas, (ii) to investigate the effects FATA merger with KP, and (iii) to present policy recommendations in this regard. The study adopted sequential mixed methods exploratory research designed. The data was collected in two forms i.e. qualitative and quantitative. The qualitative data was collected via semi structured interviews from relevant stakeholders, 15 in total purposively (three from each the intelligentsia; politicians; jurists and legal practitioner; social activists; and bureaucrats). Collected data was analysed with the help of Thematic Network Analysis. 221 basic themes are emerged. These basic themes are clipped in to 32 organizing themes on the basis of similarity and correspondence and subsequently these 32 organizing themes generated ` 7 main/global themes. With the help of this analysis, questionnaire was designed and piloted in Urdu language. The survey was administered in all seven agencies and six FRs of tribal areas. 206 out of 400 distributed/administered questionnaires were returned/found fit for analysis. It is concluded from the qualitative part of this research that FATA have been deprived from the major rights in this advance world. The existing system of FATA is outdated, inhuman and unjust. It was also found out that creation of separate province is not a feasible option and not based on the ground realities and wishes of general masses. In case of separate province, they will lack enough resources, technical expertise and knowledge to run it as separate province. Almost majority respondents were agreed to the fact that Future Governance model for FATA is one and only merger with special status as the FATA and KP have same culture, traditions, geo-graphic proximity and language. Furthermore, after merger of FATA with KP common man will be obliged with basic rights of life and will empowered to enjoy the benefits. Such positive reforms will bring peace but require some time to restore. The masses will get rid from the rubbish model of FCR and no more will be slaves of PA/APA and Malik. From Quantitative data analysis, it was found that tribal areas peoples are facing major problems as (i) in-efficient and troubling political agent/administration, (ii) FCR, (iii) un-employment issue, (iv) lack of health facilities, (v) corruption, (vi) lack of economic opportunities issue, (vii) deployment of Army, (viii) lack of educational facilities, terrorism, (ix) lack of basic needs/necessities, (x) deteriorating law and order situation, (xi) existing mal functioning judicial set up, (xii) Malik, (xiii) poverty, (xiv) collective responsibility. It was pointed out Politicians are more responsible rather than Bureaucracy. People/groups or institutions are FATA MNAs and Senators, political agent/administration, malik, establishment/Army, FCR – the existing system own responsible for prevailing issues and the role of Molvi can also be not ignored. The study concluded that creation of separate province is not a feasible option and not based on the ground realities. In case of separate province tribal may have lack of enough resources, technical expertise and knowledge to run FATA as separate province. Almost majority respondents were agreed to the point that future governance model for FATA shall be merger of FATA with KP with special status as the FATA and KP have similar culture, traditions, geo-graphic proximity and language. ` Furthermore, common man will be entitled to basic rights of life and enjoy the benefits. The masses will get rid from the rubbish model of FCR and they will be no more slaves of PAs/APA and Malik. By finalizing the results of qualitative data 12 out of 15 respondents were in favour of the policy decision taken by the government on quantitative side 76.70% were also in support of this decision with special status. The result of stakeholders and general masses are in agreement with the views of one other and both are on the same page. Through merger masses will get rid of from this rubbish model of FCR. The study also presented policy recommendations in terms of future law enforcement agency / policing, local government system, judicial system, and international funding in tribal areas along with that it also argued for the enhancement of capabilities of KP Administration. Supervisor:- Dr Muhammad Nasir Co- Supervised:- Muhammd Khan Riaz

Meta Data

Keywords : Citizens Perception Survey – CPS, FATA Future Governance Models, FATA Policy Reforms, FATA Problems, FATA Reforms, Participative Decision Making, Sequential Mixed Methods, Thematic Analysis
Supervisor: Muhammad Nasir

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