PPP vows to resist any attempt to delay polls
10 January, 2013
KARACHI: A meeting of the senior leadership of the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) presided over by President Asif Ali Zardari on Wednesday resolved to hold forthcoming general election on time, and vowed not to allow any attempt to postpone the polls.
Senator Farhatullah Babar said that the meeting lasted for over two hours and discussed the current political situation in the country. Noting that some elements were seeking to disrupt the electoral system and postpone the elections, the meeting reiterated the commitment of the government and the PPP to thwart any attempt to postpone the elections.
The meeting, which was held at the Bilawal House, was attended by Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf, PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, former Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, Makhdoom Amin Fahim, Nazar Muhammad Gondal, Rana Farooq Saeed Khan, Syed Naveed Qamar, Qamar Zaman Kaira, Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar, Rehman Malik, Mian Manzoor Watto, Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani, Syed Khursheed Shah, Makhdoom Shahabuddin, Senator Mian Raza Rabbani, Senator Jahangir Bader, Senator Sardar Ali Khan, Senator Farooq Naek, Sherry Rehman, Rukhsana Bangash, Fouzia Habib, Chaudhry Imtiaz Safdar Warraich and Preisdent's spokesperson Senator Farhatullah Babar.
The meeting made it clear that elections will be held on time as stipulated in the constitution, and no delay, even for a day, will be permitted on any pretext. It noted that if elections can be held in war-torn and strife-torn Afghanistan and Iraq then there was no reason that they could not be held in Pakistan on time as stipulated in the constitution.
The meeting also decided to set up a four-member committee to talk with the political forces and also with the provincial government of Punjab on the current situation with a view to hold elections on time and in a transparent, free and fair manner and to confront any challenge to it. It said that no one will be permitted to deprive the people of their right to elect their representatives and choose their government.
The four-member committee comprises Federal Minister Khursheed Shah, Senator Farooq Naek, Nazar Muhammad Gondal and Senator Mian Raza Rabbani. Senator Farhatullah Babar said the meeting also expressed its determination to maintain law and order at all costs and to protect the life and property of citizens against any adventurism and under all circumstances.
The meeting comes in the backdrop of proposed long march by Tahirul Qadri on Islamabad to press for electoral reforms. The Tehreek-e-Minhajul Quran chief said on Tuesday that the federal and Punjab governments were using undemocratic tactics to thwart the long march and warned of backlash if it was obstructed.