The execution of Rawalpindi Ring Road and Leh Expressway Flood Channel projects may hit snags amidst vacant key posts in THE Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA).
Around 150 seats including the position of the director-general, the chief engineer, the director, the deputy director, assistant directors, building inspectors have been lying vacant in the civic agency for the last many years with officials holding additional charge of several key posts.
Both the mega projects have entered the initial phase and the prime minister is expected to lay the foundations of the schemes on December 25.
Currently, the Rawalpindi commissioner is serving as the acting director-general of the RDA.
The RDA is facing a shortage of the chief engineer and four directors in metropolitan planning, estate management, land and engineering directorates. The seats have been lying are vacant for the past three years
Similarly, engineering, planning and housing estate management departments were facing the shortage of four deputy directors, eight assistant directors, five survey draftsmen and 14 building inspectors.
Several directors and deputy directors were currently holding additional charges amidst no hiring in the civic agency for the last many years.
In total, around 150 seats from grade-1 to grade-15 have also been lying vacant in the RDA and no progress had been made on the summaries sent to the authorities concerned to fill them up.
The RDA is the executive agency of both mega projects and the authority is also facing extreme difficulties in establishing the project management units.
Sources said that the RDA had sent recommendations to the Punjab government for recruitment on the vacant seats but no progress had been made in this regard.
In the last 30 months, six DGs of RDA have been changed after a brief interval even though the director-general is supposed to serve in the civic agency for three years. Currently, the Rawalpindi commissioner is holding the additional charge of the authority’s DG.
When contacted, RDA Chairman Tariq Mehmood Murtaza confirmed the dearth of human resources in the civic agency.
He said that orders for the deployment of three engineers in the engineering department will be issued soon. He said that the process of recruitment on vacant posts through the Punjab Public Service Commission is also under way.
The RDA chairman said that separate PMUs will be established for the Leh Expressway Flood Channel and Rawalpindi Ring Road projects so that work could be expedited on them.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 17th, 2021.