Repose confidence in PM: Coalition partners unanimously reinvigorate call for holding of elections

Express resolve to adhere to parliament decision on provision of election funds; Elections should be held in Oct-Nov: PM Shehbaz Sharif


ISLAMABAD (APP): A meeting of the top leadership of coalition parties in the government on Wednesday unanimously decided holding of simultaneous elections on the same day throughout the country after the completion of the constitutional term of the incumbent government.

The leaders of the allied political parties decided that holding of elections on the same day after the completion of the present government’s tenure, was the main point which would serve as base for any formulated strategy in that regard.

The participants expressed their complete confidence in the prime minister and resolved their full support to him, besides giving him the authority to take decisions.

The allied parties expressed that they would fully back all the decisions taken by the prime minister.

The important consultative meeting of the leaders of coalition parties was held at the PM House with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in the chair, the PM Office Media Wing said in a press release issued in Urdu language.

The high-level meeting was attended by Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, former president Asif Ali Zardari, Pakistan Peoples Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and other leaders.

During the meeting, the overall situation in the country was reviewed, particularly the matters which emerged after the decisions taken by ‘a one-sided and controversial Supreme Court bench’.

The meeting also mulled over taking forward of earlier initiated consultative process to holding of elections in the country on simultaneous day after the constitutional term of the incumbent government’s tenure.

They also deliberated upon the future strategy in the backdrop of current political contacts and consultations by a committee formed in this regard.

They expressed the views that the ruling coalition partners had already started political consultation over holding of fair, free and transparent polls in the country on the same day and asserted that the “Punchayat” role of the Supreme Court over a purely political issue was unsuitable.

The holding of negotiations and developing of consensus process was completely related to the realm of political parties and they had been carrying out this process with efficiency and success for the years. They decided to keep the issues within the political domain.

Deliberating upon the April 19 decision of the Supreme Court, the meeting expressed its dismay that it had again issued a directive while neglecting the constitutional process regarding issuance of funds by the Federal Government required for holding of elections without approval by the National Assembly and viewed that it was in contrast to the scheme of the Constitution.

The meeting also regretted the apex court’s observation in its order that the prime minister had lost confidence of the  majority of the House.

The leadership of the parties termed the observation amounting to contempt of the Parliament and the office of the prime minister and called it ‘condemnable.

They urged the Supreme Court to respect the Parliament and its opinion. The entire Parliament stood with the prime minister and showed complete confidence in him.

The meeting also considered the audio leaks involving former chief justice of Pakistan Saqib Nisar, Khawaja Tariq Rahim, a lawyer and his wife and condemned the points of their discussion in the strong words.

The discussion had exposed the conspiracy and the audios had further vindicated that the decisions were not made in accordance with the Constitution, rather on the basis of personal grudges, liking and disliking.

The meeting also strongly condemned the undemocratic thinking regarding imposition of martial law in the country which was propagated through videos on social media.

The former chief justice Saqib Nisar and Khawaja Tariq Rahim had already accepted their roles in 25th April audio clip, and which proved that former chief justice had been involved in a conspiracy against an elected prime minister and a democratically and constitutionally chosen government.

Removal of an elected prime minister through “sham, unconstitutional and illegal contempt of court proceedings” was a serious and unpardonable crime, they added.

The meeting declared that after surfacing of the videos, the “hidden purpose behind the controversial decisions of the three-member and eight-member benches” had been further exposed.

In this regard, the resolutions of the Parliament should be implemented, it was asserted.

The participants expressing grief over the death of late minister Mufti Abdul Shakoor and paid tribute to his contributions for the country and the nation.

They prayed for the departed soul and for the bereaved family to bear the loss with equanimity.

The meeting also expressed its deep grief over the incident of CTD Kabal blast and conveyed condolences to the bereaved families. They prayed for the high ranks of Shuhada.

The efforts and sacrifices of the armed forces and Jawans against terrorism and for security of the country were also lauded by the participants.

INP adds: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday said that coalition partners have unanimously decided that the elections be held in October-November across the country on the same day.

The prime minister said this while addressing a meeting of the federal cabinet.

“There is a consensus that the assembly would complete its term on August 13 and general elections must be held in October-November,” said Shehbaz Sharif while briefing media on today’s ruling alliance huddle.

The premier reiterated that the parliament would decide about the disbursement of funds to the el election commission for conducting polls in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP).

He further said, “Parliamentary committee will discuss the terms of talks between the coalition government and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) regarding holding elections across the country on the same day”.

PM Shehbaz Sharif said that the situation was very challenging today, adding that federal government’s stance was the same even today on SC’s 4-3 verdict.

“[The] SC is still trying to take things forward with the same three-member bench,” PM Shehbaz said.

The premier’s address comes hours after he held an important meeting with coalition partners to discuss the possibility of talks with the opposition PTI on SC’s directives.

The attorney general for Pakistan and federal ministers also attended the meeting. The meeting was briefed by the legal team on the election fund case and the negotiations with opposition, say sources.

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