–Former president says party won’t encourage ‘aggressive force’ by harming institutions
–PPP co-chairman says govt needs to focus on economy, instead of putting Opp leaders in jail
–Says being targetted over 18th Amendment
HYDERABAD: A day after lashing out at powers that be, former president and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari on Sunday said his party does not want harm institutions because “there is another aggressive force”.
Addressing a press conference in Hyderabad, the former president said the PPP had accepted [its founder] Zulfikar Ali Bhutto’s death and didn’t fight against it because it did not want institutions to be weakened.
Describing the force in a thinly veiled reference as ‘junooni’, the PPP leader said his party doesn’t wish to encourage it nor does it want institutions to be weakened.
“That’s why the PPP give them space,” he said, adding that the “ability to compromise shouldn’t be taken as an act of weakness”.
“They have the wrong impression that we give them space because we are fearful or want to take power away from them. We can take power ourselves if neutrality prevails,” he said.
The former president said he was being hounded over 18th Amendment, but the amendment won’t go away as all provinces would oppose it, including Punjab.
He said despite the amendment, that gives autonomy to provinces, Sindh and Balochistan don’t get their due share. Pakistan will get stronger if its provinces are strong, he said as he defended the amendment.
The PPP co-chief, who is on a pre-arrest bail in money laundering case, said the government would achieve nothing by his arrest, in fact, the PPP considers jail its “second home”. PPP becomes stronger every time an action is taken against it, he said.
He also complained that his party members were being barred from visiting Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Bilawal was told that he couldn’t go there but Prime Minister Imran Khan was taken there the same day, he said.
Hitting out at the PTI for being a government of “imbeciles”, he said the government needed to stop focussing on arresting opposition leaders and focus on the economy. He also the anti-encroachment drive in Karachi, saying the government had snatched employment and livelihood from the citizens of Karachi.
He also claimed that the snap polls would be held soon and that the PPP would form the next government.
He said the PTI doesn’t have an understanding of how the government is run, we will rebuild the country once we get rid of them.
Speaking of the economy, he said that revenues cannot be generated through coercion as can be proved by the Federal Board of Revenue’s inability to collect taxes from citizens.
While honouring the martyrs of the 2014 Army Public School attack, the former president commented that the failure of the National Action Plan is an undoing of the sacrifices of the martyrs from four years ago.
‘WE OUSTED MUSHARRAF’:
Later, during a ceremony, Zardari said that his party ousted former military dictator Pervez Musharraf during the first 100 days of its government.
He said, “Those not willing to perform will never do so even if granted a hundred years.”
The former president asserted that only parliament has the rights to make decisions for the nation.
“Sindh runs the country by paying 63% tax. Power should be with the provinces, not the federation,” he concluded.
On Saturday, Zardari said that the political situation of the country would’ve been better if transparent elections were ‘allowed’ to be held, adding that parliament alone has the right to decide the future of the nation, not “individuals with three-year terms”.
Addressing a PPP rally in Hyderabad, the party’s co-chairman said that only the parliament has the right to make decisions concerning the nation.