Zardari claims credit for empowering parliament, trade ties with China

July 01, 2017

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The former president stresses the need to appoint a permanent foreign minister. —DawnNews screengrab
The former president stresses the need to appoint a permanent foreign minister. —DawnNews screengrab

The former president and head of Pakistan Peoples Party Parliamentarians (PPP-P), Asif Ali Zardari, claimed that had he not empowered the parliament, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif would have opted to become a president for the rest of his life.

Zardari said this while addressing a political convention at Moro, Sindh. He was of the view that "politics required farseeing and decisions that impose long lasting impacts".

The former president also claimed credit for establishing better trade ties with neighbouring China and said that it will pave way "for the betterment of Pakistan's future generations".

In his address, Zardari also highlighted the issue of Kashmir, saying Pakistan was pursuing the cause of Kashmir not because of its territory expansion plans but because it was its own issue.

He stressed the need to appoint a foreign minister and empowering the said ministry, and added that the country was facing a defeat on the front of foreign relations.

"Despite the recent critical situation, the prime minister was not taking any measure to bring it under control as he was busy in playing with pets at Murree," the former president alleged.

He assured the party workers that future lies with their party only. "If there is a future, it lies with the PPP," he said and added in a veiled reference that those who are switching loyalties (from PPP) were rotten eggs.

"Even captain (Imran Khan) was not taking them seriously and using them for photo sessions only."

He said, "Mark my words, he (Imran) will not issue them party tickets [in next general elections]."

Zardari said that the country posseses each and every resource required for progress except a "sound mind". In this connection he highlighted his decisions regarding electricity production and complained that the Islamabad and bureaucracy did not pay attention to them.

He also assured the party workers that the future of party was safe and sound and his children who are the upcoming leadership of the party were vigilant for the rights of masses.

Feudal lords have been ruling the region and they did not serve the public, but now the future would be bright, he promised.