KAMALIA: For the first time hinting at a potential loss of power, Prime Minster Imran Khan on Saturday warned that once in power, the opposition would abolish National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to purge itself of previous corruption and commit new ‘financial crimes.’

Predicting the path to be taken by the Opposition, “then, the fourth character (referring to former prime minister Nawaz Sharif) of this drama sitting in London would return to launch malicious campaigns against the judiciary to divide it and attack the army as well. He will be helped by the media and the election commission.”

Addressing a charged crowd at Kamalia – an ancient town some 200 kilometers west of Lahore – he delivered a veiled warning to those who matter. If Nawaz Sharif returns, he will divide the judiciary – in fact he has already started doing it and signs are visible in the judiciary. But his target, as always, would be the army. He has not been able to work with the military.

Says if Nawaz returns, he will ‘weaken institutions’

The previous NRO, given by former president Pervez Musharraf, washed them clean of earlier corruption. For the next 10 years, they made billions more, which they now want to launder themselves yet again.

Reiterating his interpretation of Islamic dictum of “good and bad” and neutrality in such situation, he again said that the “God has ordained us to side with the good. It is not a matter of choice, but command. The God has not left this discretion to people, but gave clear direction.”

Continuing with his customary name-calling for the opposition, he said he can only thank “three rats,” for bringing no-confidence motion. “The motion has boomeranged, reigniting passion in rank and file of the party and multiplying his support base. People now have a clear choice between the good and the bad. Asif Ali Zardari is facing massive corruption cases, so is Shehbaz Sharif. Fazlur Rehman has ‘sold religion’ for politics but sold his soul for permits. These people know they would be in jail if I stay in power,” the prime minister told his substantial number of slogan-chanting audience.

Imran Khan again brought up foreign policy issues in the public meeting, saying that “why those 22 envoys breached diplomatic protocol and wrote a letter. The president of the European Union called me to request me to mediate between Russia and Ukraine. We need people of your stature to bring peace to warring parties,” were his words. People like Shehbaz Sharif cannot appreciate issues of such huge importance.Prime Minister Imran Khan took the occasion to invite people “to history-making event” in Islamabad today. “It is a chance for you be part of Rah-i-Haq (righteous path) caravan. Reach Islamabad as early as possible on Sunday because roads may be blocked later in the day because of massive number of commuters travelling to join the event.”

Published in Dawn, March 27th, 2022

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