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Shahbaz, Fazl huddle to chalk out opposition's response to economic, political challenges

Updated June 17, 2019

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Consensus reached that whatever the APC decides about opposition's future course of action will be accepted by all, Maulana Fazl says. Photo: Author
Consensus reached that whatever the APC decides about opposition's future course of action will be accepted by all, Maulana Fazl says. Photo: Author

Opposition Leader in the National Assembly and PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif on Monday evening met Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman at the latter's residence for a detailed discussion on the country's political and economic situation.

"On behalf of my party, I want to thank Maulana Fazl for the delicious food he served us today," Sharif said in the joint press statement with Fazl.

"We discussed the current political scenario and the country's economic conditions at length today. Everything has gotten extremely expensive," he observed. "A storm of inflation looms large for millions of citizens."

"We also discussed foreign policy and parliamentary matters. We are in agreement that an 'all parties conference' (APC) should be convened soon to deliberate all outstanding issues," the opposition leader said.

"'Selected' Prime Minister Imran [Khan] Niazi has destroyed the economy," Sharif continued. "Where will the common citizen find the resources to fulfill their needs and feed themselves?"

"Trade, investment and Pakistan's entire economy are facing challenges. The nation is very concerned. We [the opposition] will resolve these matters with our collective wisdom and in consultation with each other," he said.

"Imran Niazi misled the nation from the containers. In 10 months, his cruel decisions have turned the ordinary person's life into a living hell," he said.

"We will stand with the widows and orphans to have this budget overturned. This is the worst budget in Pakistan's history," he claimed.

"I have never seen a bigger liar than this selected prime minister. We have been the subject of ridicule around the world because of him."

In his statement, Fazl thanked the opposition leader and the other PML-N leaders for accepting his dinner invitation.

"We discovered during the meeting that we [the PML-N and JUI-F] seem to share the same thoughts," he remarked.

"I have requested that [PML-N supremo] Nawaz Sharif be consulted on when the APC should be held. This fake government and imposed rulers have never been acceptable to us," he stated.

"It is unfortunate that we could not implement our joint resolution post July 25 [2018 elections] — but better late than never. We [the opposition] are now trying to reach a common position once again."

"Production orders [for incarcerated parliamentary leaders] are not being issued because the government wishes to thwart a vote on the budget," Fazl alleged. "For the first time, the government is protesting against an opposition. They do not even let the opposition leader speak."

"It is not possible for the government to pass the budget," Fazl claimed. "Pakistan's future will only be safe once these leaders are taken care of," he said.

"We have reached a consensus that whatever the APC decides [about our future course of action] will be accepted by all."