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Opposition too toeing US line: Ghinwa

September 10, 2006

LAHORE, Sept 9: People’s Party (Shaheed Bhutto) chairperson Ghinwa Bhutto alleged here on Saturday that all the major players on the country’s political scene, including the opposition parties and alliances, were taking instructions from Washington and promoting the US interests in the region.

At a reception hosted by the Lahore District Bar Association, the chief of her own faction of the PPP alleged that the country’s foreign as well as economic policies were being formulated under the US dictation and the rulers had surrendered the state’s sovereignty to Washington, putting its unity and integrity at stake.

The ARD, she said, was not far behind the government in serving American interest.

Benazir Bhutto’s PPP had always sought US patronage only to return to power, while Nawaz Sharif’s government initiated the privatization of precious national assets and laid foundation of the economic disaster which was now forcing people to commit suicides.

Ms Bhutto also targeted the MMA, alleging its members returned to assemblies in such a large numbers after the Americans instructed the rulers to ensure their victory. The same hand, she said, was behind making the MMA accredited opposition in the National Assembly and Maulana Fazlur Rehman its leader “on technical grounds” although other opposition groups were more in number in the legislature. She said the MMA subsequently reciprocated ‘faithfully’ by totally subjecting their political role in assemblies to the will of the only superpower.

She wondered why the MMA continued to cling to the coalition government in Balochistan when its leaders were overtly opposing Nawab Akbar Bugti’s killing. She said the MMA’s threat of resigning from the assemblies was also a ‘big farce’ because the alliance leadership knew that a majority of its members would not return to the house in future.

About MMA’s stance on Hudood laws, she said it was by no means political because it had divided the opposition to the benefit of the rulers. “I must say that all the MMA’s political activities so far have promoted the interests of the army regime in the country”, she added.

Ghinwa Bhutto said her party would strive for people’s rights without joining any opposition alliance. She said that she knew such a path was difficult but her party could not join hands with the forces serving the foreign masters’ interest.

She said the murder of Nawab Akbar Bugti had shaken the foundations of the federation because he was the last of the tribal chiefs who could listen to Islamabad. Now the government was saying it would resolve the Balochistan issue in a political way, but why it could not do so with agreeable Bugti, sounded like a major conspiracy.

Equating Akbar Bugti’s killing with those of Liaqat Ali Khan, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Mir Murtaza Bhutto, she said it was one of the worst chapters of the country’s chequered history which would make a deep impact on its future. LBA president Imran Masood also addressed the reception.