Army chief backs efforts towards ‘healing’ alliances

Published February 11, 2024
COAS Asim Munir speaks at a passing out parade in KP. — File photo
COAS Asim Munir speaks at a passing out parade in KP. — File photo

KARACHI: As political parties make their moves to secure alliances and assurances to form governments in the Centre and Punjab after the elections, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Asim Munir has said the nation needs “stable hands and a healing touch to move on from the politics of anarchy and polarisation”.

In a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), which seems to endorse political efforts towards forming a coalition among various political actors, the army chief said: “Political leadership and their workers should rise above self-interests and synergise efforts in governing and serving the people, which is perhaps the only way to make democracy functional and purposeful.”

He said as the people reposed their combined trust in the Constitution, it was “incumbent upon all political parties to reciprocate the same with political maturity and unity. As we move forward from this national milestone we must reflect on where the country stands today and where our rightful place should be in the comity of nations”.

“Pakistan’s diverse polity and pluralism will be well-represented by a unified government of all democratic forces imbibed with national purpose,” he added.

“Elections and democracy are means to serve people of Pakistan and not ends in themselves. The nation needs stable hands and a healing touch to move on from the politics of anarchy and polarisation which does not suit a progressive country of 250 Million people. Elections are not a zero-sum competition of winning and losing but an exercise to determine the mandate of the people.”

“Political leadership and their workers should rise above self-interests and synergise efforts in governing and serving the people which is perhaps the only way to make democracy functional and purposeful,” the army chief said.

The COAS congratulated the entire nation, caretaker government, Election Commission of Pakistan, political parties and all winning candidates on successful conduct of elections. “The free and unhindered participation by Pakistani people to exercise their right of vote demonstrated their commitment to democracy and the rule of law as enshrined in Constitution of Pakistan,” he said.

Gen Munir praised the personnel of law-enforcement agencies for creating a safe and secure environment for the elec­toral process, despite overwhelming odds.

Published in Dawn, February 11th, 2024

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