Pakistan News

Pakistan to suffer irreparable loss if PTI stays in power: Zardari

Pakistan to suffer irreparable loss if PTI stays in power: Zardari

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) leader and former president Asif Ali Zardari has said the time has come to send the rulers packing, adding if they do not dislodge the government now, the country will not be able to recover from losses.

“If we do not do it, then some other party or force will emerge and lead,” the former president said while talking to reporters at his residence after Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman met him on Wednesday.

Read: JUI-F march to Islamabad will bring down PTI govt: Fazl

PPP leaders Farhatullah Babar, Nayyar Bokhari and former prime minister Raja Pervez Ashraf were also present.

JUI-F and PPP have unanimity of views on almost all political issues, says Maulana Fazl after meeting ex-president

Mr Zardari, who had last week hinted at launching a movement against the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government, said if they did not dislodge the government then the next generations would not forgive them. He said if the present rulers were allowed to stay, the country would suffer losses that no political party would be able to recover.

Responding to a question as to when they would practically launch the movement, Mr Zardari replied it depended upon the “weather”.

“War, strike and fight all depend on the weather,” said a smiling Zardari without giving any time frame.

“Hopefully, we will soon devise the strategy and the captain will have to go home,” he added.

Responding to another question, Mr Zardari said the time would tell whether there would be an in-house change or the country would go towards mid-term polls, saying “we will go for the least poison.”

Asked if he planned to visit former prime minister Nawaz Sharif to inquire after his health, the PPP leader said his son and party chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari had already done it.

Read: Bilawal meets Nawaz Sharif at Kot Lakhpat jail, regrets his incarceration

The JUI-F chief said he had only come for dinner but they had discussed the prevailing political situation in detail and the two parties had unanimity of views on almost all the issues. He said they were determined to rid this nation of the PTI government.

The Maulana had called on the PPP leader a day after meeting supreme leader of the Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) Nawaz Sharif at Jati Umra on Tuesday.

The JUI-F chief said he had also discussed the political situation in the country with Mr Sharif.

Talking to Dawn after his meeting with Mr Sharif, the JUI-F chief stated that he was hopeful of getting support of all political parties in his effort to dislodge what he described as an “installed government led by a puppet prime minister”.

Earlier addressing a large public gathering on the occasion of the 40th death anniversary of former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto at Garhi Khuda Bakhsh last week, Mr Zardari had declared that they could put Islamabad under siege, which would end only when Prime Minister Imran Khan and his team were “thrown out of parliament”.

Similarly, Maulana Fazlur Rehman addressing a a news conference last month had threatened to stage a sit-in in Islamabad against the government, saying that if they came to the capital, they would not return without achieving their objectives.

The JUI-F chief has good relations with both Mr Sharif and Mr Zardari and meets the two leaders on his will.

His last meeting with Mr Zardari had taken place in Islamabad on March 21, the day Mr Zardari and his son Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari had appeared before the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in connection with investigations into fake bank accounts case.

Published in Dawn, April 11th, 2019

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