PPP made democracy strong despite hiccups: Zardari
04 March, 2013
SIALKOT: President Asif Ali Zardari on Sunday said that despite immense difficulties faced by the current democratic dispensation, the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) succeeded in planting the sampling of democracy which has strengthened its roots during the last five years.
The president told the inauguration ceremony of Safe Mother Home and Old Age Home projects Pakistan was about to experience a historical moment when one democratic government, after completion of its tenure of five years, will hand over power to another democratically elected government.
He recalled that earlier governments remained under threat by undemocratic elements and were removed from power prematurely, which adversely affected the development of the country.
He hoped that the next democratically elected government, whosoever it be, would not have to face the same difficulties as were faced by the current government and it would be able to focus its energies and efforts wholly and exclusively for the development and prosperity of the country.
The president said the completion of a number of development projects has drew the government another step closer to the dream of bringing about qualitative change in the lives of the poor and down-trodden segments of the society.
He appreciated the sacrifices rendered by the citizens of Sialkot for defence of the country and said that the city is not only known for its sports industry but also for its sacrifices for the defence of the country.
Later, President Zardari unveiled the plaques of Safe Mother Home and Old Age Home projects along with Minister for National Services and Regulations Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan and Chairman Evacuee Trust Board Syed Asif Hashmi.
Explaining the salient features of the projects, Firdous and Hashmi said the Old Age Home with an initial facility to house 50 homeless old women was built at the cost of Rs 20 million on public-private partnership basis. The land was provided by local philanthropists and the cost of Rs 20 million was borne by the Evacuee Trust Property Board.
They further informed the president that the facility would be managed by a non-governmental organisation. The state-of-the-art facility would provide decent living to old homeless women living under subsistence level in 124 union councils of the district.
Dilating upon the salient features of Safe Mother Home, they said it was a 50-bed maternity hospital to provide child and mother care facility, which would cater to a target area of 92 union councils of the district.
They further said with the completion of this facility, high child and mother mortality rate would be reduced significantly.
Dr Firdous thanked the president for being with the people of Sialkot to share their happiness on the completion of projects. She also hosted a lunch for the president.
Leader of Opposition in Punjab Assembly Raja Riaz, members of civil society and notables of the area were also present at the ceremony.