Home »Top News » Pakistan Top News » Election 2013 met legal requirements; no evidence of rigging found: PM

imageISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif Thursday said the historic verdict of the Inquiry Commission has termed the holding of 2013 General Election as "just" and to have met all legal requirements.

In a televised address to the nation the Prime Minister said the Commission has not found any evidence of a conspiracy to manipulate the results.

He urged the nation to move beyond the era of allegations and politics of negativity, and march ahead with a conviction for democratic stability, progress and prosperity.

The Prime Minister said "the Inquiry Commission report endorses the view that problems will be resolved in the Constitutional assemblies and not on roads and through sit-ins."

The Prime Minister said he has directed to public the report of the General Election Inquiry Commission and said the credible Inquiry Commission has fully endorsed that the General Election 2013 was held in a transparent manner, with no shred of evidence pointing to any rigging.

He however regretted that the justly conducted, unblemished general elections were made controversial that brought a bad name to the country internationally.

"This is an unfortunate chapter of our history that cannot be easily forgotten," he said.

The General Election Inquiry Commission was set up by the government to probe the allegations by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf of a conspiracy to rig the 2013 General Elections.

The Commission inquired whether the election was conducted with impartiality, justly and with honesty and met the legal requirements.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said apart from the deficiencies related to the Election Commission, the General Election 2013, in general, was held in a just manner, according to the legal requirements.

He asked the nation to treat historic verdict of the Inquiry Commission as a milestone in it's history and urged to focus on progress and development of the country.

"We have to address the neglects of the past, discourage those who caused uncertainty and instability and focus on strengthening the democratic system to materialise the dreams of millions of Pakistanis."

The Prime Minister said the nation did not have time to waste on "hollow slogans, baseless claims, emotional appeals and purposeless shows."

He said the nation now has to keep track of each and every moment without getting distracted by the voices around and focus on the bright future ahead.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said uncertainty in nations was not only fruitless but also proved destructive. Uncertainty creates political instability, obstructs the path of advancement and progress. He was of the view that the country has paid a heavy price for this uncertainty and instability.

"Had our political history of around 70 years not faced uncertainty, instability and chaos, there would have been no hurdle in democratic system, and today we would have stood shoulder to shoulder with the developed nations."

The Prime Minister said as he addressed the nation, many areas in the country were inundated. The provincial governments and departments concerned must ensure that there was no lapse in rescue, relief and rehabilitation of the flood affected people.

The federal government was fully active and he himself was visiting the flood affected areas. He lauded the role of the civil and military personnel and organisations involved and appealed to the nation to play their part in reaching out to the flood affected people in their hour of trial.

He assured that the government would do its best in the rehabilitation of the affected people and compensate their losses.

The Prime Minister said Pakistan today has embarked on a path of progress and prosperity and its economic condition was far better than what it was two years back.

"Our economy is improving rapidly, Pakistan's repute is improving internationally and three years later, the country would be far better, prosperous and developed."

He said the country was also progressing in its fight against terrorism and its civil and military institutions were making remarkable gains against terrorism through the Operation Zarb-e-Azb.

"We are determined to get rid not only our mountains and forests of terrorism and lawlessness, but also our cities and towns. We are committed to bring peace and prosperity and no political expediency can weaken our firm determination," he said.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said making the electoral process independent, just and clear of all ills was an important part of PML-N's manifesto.

He said he had requested the Speaker National Assembly through a letter in June 2014, to form a committee comprising all parties present in the parliament for broad and comprehensive electoral reforms.

Nawaz Sharif said he had asked the committee to go to any extent for electoral reforms. Even if it deemed necessary, it could propose Constitutional Amendments. The Committee has been formed and has held many sessions, he added.

"I expect that all the parties will sit in the reforms committee and play their effective part."

The Prime Minister said it was a rare example, not only in Pakistan, but in the world history, that a government elected with strong public support presented itself before the court.

"We had also given a written assurance that in case rigging is proved we will return to the people."

He said this commitment was demonstrative of government's certainty and belief that the results of General Election 2013 were truly representative of the public mandate.

"Allah Almighty vindicated us," he said.

After around three months of proceedings, he said, the comprehensive report of the Inquiry Commission has endorsed not only PML-N's stance but the mandate of Pakistani people as well.

"It reflects the maturity of democracy, constitutional system and institutions. It endorses the view that problems will be resolved in Constitutional Assemblies and not on the roads and through sit-ins," he added.

Referring to Inquiry Commission report, he said neither the parties, that were part of the process of Inquiry Commission, presented any proof of any plan or conspiracy, nor the material presented before the Commission gave any hint that indicated any such thing. Similarly the allegations against those people allegedly involved in the rigging also could not be proved.

He said the General Election 2013 when seen in the overall context, apart from a few lapses on the part of the Election Commission, shows that the results were reflective of the mandate of the people.

He said all details of the working of the Commission were already before the nation. It can be judged from the proceedings that the Commission, the first of its kind in our history, has met all requirements of justice, by hardwork and sagacity, while also giving full chance of presenting proofs, to those who had levelled charges of rigging.

The Prime Minister said after the elections, he continued with the constructive tradition of mutual consultation, reconciliation and consensus.

He mentioned the formation of provincial governments, national action plan, constitutional amendments and China-Pakistan Economic Corridor - all major decisions were taken with consensus.

"I don't believe in division of government and opposition on national issues. We are all Pakistanis and we all should think about the Pakistan."

"I promised to prefer the politics of values instead of politics of power and by the Grace of Allah Almighty we stand by our promise," the prime minister said.

He said it was with this belief that the government agreed to constitute the Inquiry Commission despite the fact that we knew that the general election was free of any rigging."

Prime Minister Sharif said despite all provocations, "we exhibited tolerance and tried to resolve the issues with democratic spirit."

"We will continue to abide by the same principles in future as well. We also expect those, who wasted the precious time of the country and nation, now learn the lesson and refrain from negative politics."

He said it was the only way forward which can lead us to positive and constructive politics.

Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2015

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