The speech outlines a program that provides more support for the struggle against terrorism and extremism than a thousand missile strikes. I excerpt the portions of greatest interest to an international audience (livestock, irrigation, revenue generation, etc. omitted):
Mr. Speaker, Esteemed members of the assembly.
With your support and continued solidarity of this honorable house and the people of our Province, my team in the cabinet and I will deliver on the issues of basic and vital significance. I want to share priorities of our government in the first hundred days and to highlight some of the long term objectives.
My dear friends,
Our coalition government has come to office in a period of great upheaval for the people of this region. It is very painful to see that while rest of the World is advancing into higher stages of all-round development our province and FATA have been in the fore front of a tragic armed conflict imposed on us from outside. The dark forces of death and destruction have played havoc with our beautiful land and innocent people.
I want the World to know that the
is not just about madness and fanaticism. It is the land of glorious Gandahara civilization. It is the land of illuminating Islamic Renaissance of central landof Pakhtuns Asia. It is the land of Pir Rokhan and Baacha Khan. It is the and Rehman Baba. In short it is the land of peace and brotherhood. The results of the recent election have proved it beyond any doubt that our people do not support a closed society. landof Khushal Khan Khattak
They are not for isolation. They want to join the mainstream and develop alongside the rest of the World. They have voted for peace, democracy and federalism.
Dear friends, standing on the floor of this August house, I want to reassure the people of the country in general and this Province in particular that peace and security remains at the top of our agenda.
Peace and Security:
The problem of violence, extremism and militancy faced by the people of our Province and in FATA is the outcome of flawed political policies of the past. In essence the problem is political with security as an important dimension of this problem.
We are convinced that there is no military solution to the complex issues and challenges vis-à-vis peace and security intensified over the years due to flawed policies. We are therefore, essentially looking for political solutions for dealing with these issues and challenges we are all faced with. Our stance on politically negotiated settlement of the issues has received an overwhelming support by the people and we are committed to our promise to the people.
We are also happy to note that a popular consensus has emerged on a negotiated settlement to the problem of militancy, not only among the political parties, but nearly all the state institutions are also in agreement with us on this point. Further, we have received credible signals from the dissidents that they are too are interested in a peace dialogue. However, while our commitments are firm on finding a negotiated settlement taking along all key stake holders, we do not wish to raise false hopes and expectations. We are well aware that there are many rejectionists at local, regional and international levels with various agendas and positions who might jeopardize the process. We are however, determined to find an indigenous solution with the participations of all genuine stakeholders. We shall not allow anyone to hold the entire Pukhtun belt as hostage.
We shall follow the path of “Sulah” ["sulh" means peace as reconciliation] as directed by Allah in the Holy Quran and we shall follow the “LAR” of Pukhtunwali. May Allah grant us “Taufique” [success -- after a quotation "Min Allah Tawfiq," success comes from God] to stay on the right path, to determine the modalities of negotiations, to identify stakeholders and to conduct negotiations. Ameen!! [This is the Arabic pronunciation of the Hebrew "Amen."]
The Provincial government will announce a peace jirga of elders with representatives from a cross section of the society. In the next session of the Provincial Assembly we shall present a comprehensive peace plan for our Province and FATA. We shall actively seek the cooperation of the Federal Government on FATA as peace in our province is not possible without peace in FATA.
During our tenure we would make sure that every child of school going age gets an opportunity to go to school. The Government is committed to providing free and quality education to all up to higher secondary level.
- We would appoint a committee of experts to prepare recommendations for providing education in mother tongue of the children at primary level.
- We would revise curriculum and focus on teachers training in the interest of quality education.
We would also revise the salary and benefit package for teachers especially those working in difficult areas.
- Health and life insurance will be provided to the teachers at no cost to them. Further, travel and accommodation support will be ensured particularly for women teachers working in difficult and far flung areas.
- The government will also look into affordable housing schemes for government teachers.
- We shall also take the organizers of Deeni Madaris [madrasas] on board for seeking their cooperation in imparting technical training to young people. Children studying in these Deeni Madaris are an important part of our society and we would do everything in our power to provide a bright future to them.
- The Provincial government notes with grave concern the increase in the number of children ending up on the streets. The government will with the help of philanthropists’ set-up homes on the patterns of SOS villages for those children who are currently on the streets, after all they are our future generation.
Our Government is committed to providing equal opportunities for women in education, employment and decision-making.
- We shall build and protect girls’ schools.
- We shall ensure that women are employed in higher bureaucracy against the set existing quotas.
- We shall form a Provincial Commission on the Status of Women which will work closely with the National Commission on the Status of Women in reviewing discriminatory laws and practices, prepare recommendations for change and monitor multiple forms of violence against women.
- Recognizing the fact that women in the Province lag behind on key human development indicators, therefore, our government will extend full support to the Ministry of Women’s Development for taking effective measures to bridge the gap.
- Programmes, policies and plans of each Ministry will be reviewed to ensure that they address gender concerns adequately.
- Special programmes for technical skills development and small and medium sized business will be initiated for women.
- Adequate credit schemes will be designed to suit the needs of women entrepreneurs.
- The government will also introduce special incentives for home-based women workers to encourage them.
Environmental degradation is the one serious problem that can not only catch up with the problem of militancy and violence, but has the potential of undermining our future as a community of people. The worst part of the problem is that there is very little awareness about the hazards that we are confronted with in this area.
- Our first priority in this regard would be to launch a massive and consistent campaign for creating awareness in the masses about environmental issues.
- During the first hundred days we shall formulate a comprehensive policy for protecting our natural habitat and sustainable development in the province. We shall involve all the stake holders and civil society in formation of the policy.
This province has a rich cultural heritage. But unfortunately our culture has borne the brunt of violence in recent years. The provincial government will use all its resources to revive our cultural heritage and put it on the path of development.
- We shall open Nishtar Hall for healthy cultural activities. [Nishtar Hall is the main venue for music and dance performances in Peshawar. It was closed by the Islamist government of the MMA.] The government will maintain effective check over obscenity and vulgarity according to law.
- We will organize a systematic interaction with artists to ascertain their problems and include their suggestions in resolving those problems.
- We shall declare a special package for the rehabilitation of artist community who had suffered colossal dislocation due to the discriminatory policies of the past government.
- The provincial government will proactively take measures for the promotion of Pashtu in terms of research and publications.
- Our government will respect cultural diversity in the province and would provide opportunities for the development of Hindko, Kohar and all the other languages spoken in this province.
- The provincial government will respect and protect independence of media.
- Our government will provide every support to improve the working conditions and financial remuneration of the working journalists.
- We shall follow a totally fair policy of distributing advertisements among the news papers and journals. [Very important, as advertising from government bodies is one of the main sources of income
for the press.]
- Jails will be transferred into reformatory institutions and redundant laws and rules will be amended to bring them in line with modern concepts.
- Scale and variety of diet will be enhanced.
- Lawyers, intellectual, civil society and people from all walks of life will be requested for suggestions for improvement of Criminal Justice System.