Pakistan

Pakistan

WFD started working in Pakistan in 2012 by supporting the federal and provincial legislatures. Over the years WFD has worked with various stakeholders to strengthen the parliamentary system in Pakistan. Currently, WFD’s work in Pakistan is focused on two broad themes; promoting accountable politics by assisting the parliament to scrutinise government performance through legislative and financial oversight mechanisms, and improving marginalised and vulnerable groups’ access to formal and informal political participation. To achieve the desired change, WFD is working with Pakistan Institute of Parliamentary Services, Women Parliamentary Caucus Pakistan, Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) task-forces and secretariats at federal and provincial levels. 

 

 

2012: year of first WFD programme in Pakistan
Context

Aspiration for democracy can be recognized as an enduring feature of Pakistani people culture, history and politics. Prolonged dictatorships, obliterated democratic norms, stifled democratic values have not been able to affect the persistent vigour and vitality towards a democratic parliamentary system. This determination has recently been rewarded with over a decade long democracy and two transitions of powers between elected governments. While these transitions represent evolution and development of democratic system, it has raised certain expectations among citizens for democratic dividend which can only be delivered through stronger federal and provincial parliaments.

Supporting Punjab and Sindh

WFD worked with the Provincial Assembly of the Punjab in partnership with PIPS to support the Assembly with its new powers after the 18th Amendment to the Constitution gave considerable new responsibilities to the provinces was adopted. Concurrently, WFD was a consortium partner in the EU funded programme; “Improving Parliamentary Performance in Pakistan,” which worked with the federal parliament. Since 2015, WFD extended our engagement at the provincial level to the Sindh region. In addition, we have deepened our relationship with PIPS and the federal parliament and have extended our support to include legislative drafting where Pakistan and the UK have a shared legal tradition.

Country Data

Population:

Population:

197
million
GDP:

GDP:

$278.9
billion USD
GNI per capita:

GNI per capita:

$1,500
USD
Media freedom:

Media freedom:

65/100
(not free)
Democracy index:

Democracy index:

43/100
(partly free)

Results

Improved accountability through more robust scrutiny of government performance
More transparent, open democratic institutions with increased engagement with civil society
Worked to amend the Standing Orders of the Provincial Assembly of the Punjab 2014
Enhanced the capacity of technical legislative drafters through in-depth secondments to the UK

Implementation

Parliamentary Strengthening through Inclusive and Accountable politics
Underway
Supporting Openness and inclusiveness at the Parliament of Pakistan through Commonwealth Partnership for Democracy
Underway
Supporting provincial legislatures’ effectiveness in Punjab and Sindh
Completed
Programme end: March 2018
Improving Parliamentary Performances in Pakistan
Completed
Programme end: 2015
Strengthening Legislatures' Effectiveness
Completed
Programme end: March 2018

News

Participants discuss parliamentary openness and transparency in Bali, Indonesia

Indonesia leads the way on parliamentary commitment to openness in Asia

As election day in Indonesia comes to an end, will the appointment of over 20,000 new legislators make its parliament more open and transparent? Indonesia is the world’s third largest democracy and 192 million voters are going to the polls today. That is why, as in any democracy, it is important to have an open […]

(Above: Muhammad Mushtaq (Joint Secretary – Legislation, National Assembly) and Javid Iqbal (Drafter – Legislation Council, Senate) with their host in the Scottish Parliament)

Crafting effective legislation needs a solid understanding of society

Kashif Mahmood Tariq, a former legislative drafter from Pakistan participated in a WFD organised placement in October 2016. Following his placement he argued that effective legislation needs a solid understanding of society. Parliaments find it very easy to pass laws. Yet those who work for them often find themselves scratching their heads about how to […]