ISLAMABAD, Sep 20: Patron in Chief of PML-N Nawaz Sharif on Sunday has categorically declared that the opposition’s struggle was not against Prime Minister Imran Khan but those who brought him into power through the 2018 elections.
Addressing the much-hyped PPP-hosted All Parties conference via video link from London, Nawaz Sharif said “Our foremost priority should be removing the selected government and this system. Our struggle is not against Imran Khan,” said Nawaz. “Today, our struggle is against those who installed Imran Khan and who manipulated elections to bring an incapable man like him into power and thus, destroyed the country.”
“If change is not brought, it will bring irreversible loss to this country. It is very important that our armed forces stay away from our governmental system according to our Constitution and the Quaid’s speech, and not interfere with the people’s choice. We have made this country a joke in our own eyes and internationally as well.”
Nawaz Sharif while thanking PPP chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari for hosting the conference said “I am thankful to the organisers of the conference for giving me the opportunity to talk. Even though I am away from my country, I know very well what condition the country and the people are in. I believe this is a decisive turn; it is necessary to protect democracy and take fearless decisions.”
In an all-encompassing speech, which centred on criticising the Imran Khan-led government, Nawaz spoke on the “poor state” of Pakistan’s economy, “deteriorating” international relations, “muzzling” of media and “corruption within the PTI and Bani Gala”. He also repeated the opposition’s allegation that the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), with the connivance of PTI, was carrying out only “selective accountability”.
“Pakistan has been constantly deprived of a democratic system When the vote is dishonoured, the entire democratic system becomes meaningless. When it is decided before the election process as to who will win and who will lose, then it can be guessed how the public is betrayed and how the public’s mandate is stolen.”Pakistan has become a laboratory of “such experiments”, added Nawaz. “Every child knows that no prime minister has been allowed to complete five years in power.”
Nawaz said former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani once pointed to “a state within a state” in Pakistan. “It is saddening that the situation has escalated to a state above the state. This parallel government illness is the root-cause of our problems.”
Speaking about the 2018 elections, he said the primary reason for the current problems were those people who “hijacked the people’s mandate by putting inexperienced people in power”. “This is a violation of the Constitution. Has anyone given a thought to what a grave crime it is to steal the people’s mandate?”
“Can I ask why the Results Transmission System (RTS) was closed for hours during election, why polling agents were thrown out during counting? Why was dhandli done, on whose directives and why? The secretary Election Commission should answer and all those responsible will have to answer.”
Nawaz alleged the government has enforced a “martial law” . “Criminals are allowed to make amendments to the Constitution the people’s premier is expelled and his family is insulted. “This conference should bring forth a concrete plan of action for saving democracy, a concrete policy should be made for solving the problem of ‘a parallel state’. “I again urge this all-party conference to go beyond its traditional ways and form a plan of action.” Nawaz Concluded.