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PPP slams Imran’s plans for use of ordinances

December 07, 2018

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan People Party leaders Farhatullah Babar, Senator Sherry Rehman and Nayyar Bukhari address a press conference on Thursday.—Tanveer Shahzad/White Star
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan People Party leaders Farhatullah Babar, Senator Sherry Rehman and Nayyar Bukhari address a press conference on Thursday.—Tanveer Shahzad/White Star

ISLAMABAD: Criticising the government’s 100-day performance, the opposition Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) has alleged that Prime Minister Imran Khan is talking about midterm elections and running legislative business through presidential ordinance out of despair after failing to deliver to the masses.

Speaking at a news conference at the National Press Club here on Thursday, PPP vice president and Senator Sherry Rehman, secretary general Farhatullah Babar and former Senate chairman Nayyar Bukhari expressed their surprise over the contradictory statements of the prime minister and his finance minister over the recent jump in the dollar rate which, they said, had exposed their negligence.

Ms Rehman said the government had formed a parliamentary committee to probe alleged rigging in the general elections, but the ruling party after taking another U-turn had made the committee ineffective. Quoting the recently released Fafen report on the July 25 general elections, she said that out of 78,000 Forms-45, only 373 carried signatures of polling agents, while on 4,000 forms there was no mention of the names of parties.

Party leaders express concern over issuance of JIT notices to Bilawal

Castigating the prime minister’s remarks in a recent TV interview that the government would prefer legislation through ordinances instead of seeking the opposition’s support, Ms Rehman said her party would never allow the government to carry out legislative business through presidential ordinances.

Talking about the government-opposition deadlock over the issue of chairmanship of the all-powerful Public Account Committee of parliament, she said the PPP had a clear stance that the PAC chairmanship should be given to Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif.

Farhatullah Babar also asked the government to give this position to the opposition leader. Talking to a group of journalists after the press conference, he said it was a right of the opposition leader to hold PAC chairmanship. However, he said the opposition leader could nominate anyone else in his place.

During the press conference, Nayyar Bukhari said the prime minister had the power to dissolve assemblies to hold midterm elections, but admission of holding midterm elections was a failure of the government.

The PPP leaders said the government had so far failed to form parliamentary committees, which was a matter of concern.

They expressed concern over the issuance of notices by a joint investigation team, formed by the Supreme Court to probe the fake bank accounts case, to PPP chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, who is not nominated in any FIR.

Senator Rehman said that after the party chief’s recent address in Gilgit-Baltistan, he had received another notice, while the previous one had been issued after his address in Sukkur.

The PPP leaders said they were not scared of accountability, but the present government believed in the politics of victimisation.

Meanwhile, Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, while speaking at Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science of Technology in Islamabad, said the PPP had challenged terrorists and terrorism and faced dictators, but never taken a U-turn.

Published in Dawn, December 7th, 2018

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