Shahid Khan

The financial woes plaguing the Tehsil Municipal Administrations (TMAs) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) have reached a critical point. Employees of the TMAs have gone without salaries for a distressing five months due to a lack of funds provided by the provincial government.

To make matters worse, retired employees have also been denied their pensions due to the scarcity of funds. In response, the All Local Government Employees Federation has declared a comprehensive strike and a series of protests across the province, commencing on September 11.

A TMA employee in Peshawar expressed the dire situation, sharing how the non-payment of salaries has pushed him into debt, with even friends and relatives no longer willing to lend a helping hand. Notices demanding school expenses for children are piling up, adding to the mounting financial strain.

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Shaukat Kayani, the federation’s patron, revealed that KP houses approximately 35,000 TMA employees, and for these households, their monthly salaries are the lifeline that keeps the fires burning. Unfortunately, these employees have not received their salaries for the past five months.

Despite numerous protests by the employees against salary delays, government officials have merely made promises without taking tangible actions. The provincial government’s apparent lack of commitment to releasing funds has left the employees feeling helpless.

In line with the federation’s directive, municipal services across the province are set to face a boycott starting on September 11. This means that vital services such as sanitation, water supply, drainage, and others will be severely impacted.

However, Hasan Khan, the spokesperson for Water and Sanitation Services Peshawar, which manages municipal services in Peshawar, assured that the protest by TMA employees would not disrupt municipal services in the city. WSSP operates as an independent entity and regularly pays its employees, including some who previously served in TMAs but are now under WSSP employment. Thus far, there have been no interruptions in salary payments.