ISLAMABAD: Leader of the Opposition in the Senate Dr Shahzad Wasim on Tuesday underlined the need for charting out a national agenda in line with contemporary needs, saying that political forces must sit together to roll heads to find out solution to the problems facing the country and determine minimum common ground.

Speaking in the Senate, Dr Wasim highlighted that there was an urgent need to reset nat­ional priorities, noting that economic stability and continuity of policies should rank on top of the consensus national agenda.

The PTI leader said, “We will have to set aside ego, and personal and political agenda.” All the major political parties have remained in power, and committed mistakes on their part, he said, adding that efforts should be made to rectify the mistakes instead of pointing fingers at each other.

“In the past, priority of the governments had been to complete five-year term and punish the political opponents,” he said. He also referred to the incidents of snatching of nomination papers, crackdown on leaders, workers and candidates of a political party and a fresh wave of terrorism in Khyber Pakhtun­khwa and Balochistan and noted that conduct of free and fair elections were not possible under the present circumstances.

Says all major parties should strive to rectify past mistakes instead of pointing fingers at each other

He highlighted that elections were a competition not a war and stressed that difference of opinion should not be taken to the level of animosity. He called for bringing down the political temperature, giving way to each other and move ahead with spirit of tolerance.

He said an environment for a healthy electoral competition had to be created where level playing field was available to all and poll campaigns could be freely conducted.

PM criticised for Baloch remarks

Another highlight of the day’s proceedings was the criticism against caretaker Prime Minis­ter Anwaarul Haq for his rema­r­­ks against the Baloch protesters.

PML-N Senator Saadia Abba­­si condemned the caretaker pri­me minister for his comments on the Baloch protestors, saying that he insulted the people’s rig­hts this way.

On a point of public importance, she noted that the caretaker prime minister said on Mon­day that those protesting were anti-national people and that their sympathisers should go and join banned outfits.

Senator Abbasi regretted that it was unfortunate that a person with limited mandate and role had such views against people of his own province. She wondered if those who disappeared were anti-national, then why a case was not registered against them and were they not presented before a court.

“The PM has in­­s­ulted this House where a discussion was held yesterday and many members spoke on the matter,” she remarked.

Published in Dawn, January 3rd, 2024

Opinion

Editorial

IMF’s projections
Updated 18 Apr, 2024

IMF’s projections

The problems are well-known and the country is aware of what is needed to stabilise the economy; the challenge is follow-through and implementation.
Hepatitis crisis
18 Apr, 2024

Hepatitis crisis

THE sheer scale of the crisis is staggering. A new WHO report flags Pakistan as the country with the highest number...
Never-ending suffering
18 Apr, 2024

Never-ending suffering

OVER the weekend, the world witnessed an intense spectacle when Iran launched its drone-and-missile barrage against...
Saudi FM’s visit
Updated 17 Apr, 2024

Saudi FM’s visit

The government of Shehbaz Sharif will have to manage a delicate balancing act with Pakistan’s traditional Saudi allies and its Iranian neighbours.
Dharna inquiry
17 Apr, 2024

Dharna inquiry

THE Supreme Court-sanctioned inquiry into the infamous Faizabad dharna of 2017 has turned out to be a damp squib. A...
Future energy
17 Apr, 2024

Future energy

PRIME MINISTER Shehbaz Sharif’s recent directive to the energy sector to curtail Pakistan’s staggering $27bn oil...