Table of Contents
Overview of Article 119 of the Constitution of Pakistan
Within the constitutional framework of Pakistan lies Article 119, a pivotal provision that intricately addresses the custodial aspects of the Provincial Consolidated Fund and the Public Account of the Province. This article, nestled in the 1973 Constitution, lays down the guidelines for the custody, payment, and withdrawal of funds, forming the financial backbone of the Provincial Government.
Article 119 States
119. Custody, etc., of Provincial Consolidated Fund and Public Account
The custody of the Provincial Consolidated Fund, the payment of moneys into that Fund, the withdrawal of moneys therefrom, the custody of other moneys received by or on behalf of the Provincial Government, their payment into, and withdrawal from, the Public Account of the Province, and all matters connected with or ancillary to the matters aforesaid, shall be regulated by Act of the Provincial Assembly or, until provision in that behalf is so made, by rules made by the Governor.
Key Points of Article 119 of the Constitution of Pakistan
- Custody of the Provincial Consolidated Fund: Article 119 empowers the Provincial Assembly to regulate the custody of the Provincial Consolidated Fund. This fund serves as a central repository for revenues, loans, and repayments, forming the financial nucleus of the Provincial Government.
- Payment and Withdrawal from the Provincial Consolidated Fund: This article thoroughly details the processes associated with payment into and withdrawal from the Provincial Consolidated Fund, to ensure a transparent and regulated approach to financial transactions that contribute to or stem from it.
- Custody of Other Moneys: In addition to the Consolidated Fund, Article 119 extends its purview to cover the custody of other monies received by or on behalf of the Provincial Government. This broadens the scope to include various sources of revenue and funds outside the Consolidated Fund.
- Payment into and Withdrawal from the Public Account of the Province: The article also addresses the Public Account of the Province, a distinct financial reservoir. It delineates the procedures for the payment into and withdrawal from this account, encompassing funds not included in the Consolidated Fund, such as those received by the judiciary.
- Regulation by Legislation: A key aspect of Article 119 is its emphasis on regulation through legislation. It confers authority upon the Provincial Assembly to enact laws that govern the custody, payment, and withdrawal of funds. Alternatively, until the Assembly legislates on these matters, the Governor is empowered to establish rules.
Crux of Article 119 of the Constitution of Pakistan
At its crux, Article 119 is a constitutional mandate for a structured and accountable approach to financial governance within a province. It recognizes the significance of meticulous management of public funds, ensuring transparency, and adherence to established procedures.
The article’s brilliance lies in its dual empowerment – while bestowing authority upon the Provincial Assembly to legislate on financial matters, it also provides a mechanism for immediate action by the Governor through the establishment of rules. This duality ensures a balance between the need for comprehensive legislation and the exigencies that might require swift regulatory measures.
Conclusion: Article 119 of the Constitution of Pakistan
In conclusion, Article 119 emerges as a linchpin in the financial architecture of provincial governance in Pakistan. It not only establishes a blueprint for the custody, payment, and withdrawal of funds but also encapsulates the democratic principle of governance by law.
As we navigate the constitutional landscape of Pakistan, Article 119 shines as a beacon of financial prudence. It reflects the framers’ commitment to a governance framework that ensures the responsible management of public funds. By empowering the Provincial Assembly and the Governor to regulate financial matters, this article upholds the principles of transparency, accountability, and adaptability.
Article 119 of the 1973 Constitution stands as more than just legal provisions; it serves as a testament to constitutional wisdom that guides Provincial Government in managing its fiscal affairs responsibly and reminds us that protecting public funds requires both legislative and executive foresight in order to guarantee financial wellbeing for both province and citizens alike.