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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) on Thursday came hard on those running a ‘campaign’ for a presidential system and warned them of implication of the treason clause under 1973 Constitution, which does not allow any other system, but the parliamentary form of government in the country.

Speaking at a news conference here, PPP’s information-secretary Shazia Marri made it clear that neither her party nor the people of Pakistan will allow yet another “drama” to be staged, following the worst failure of what she called a “Project Imran Khan”.

After the “hybrid-system” and “project Imran Khan” failed badly, she added that now a new “film” is being presented under the ploy of the presidential system. “There is no mention of this new “film” – presidential form of government – in the 1973 Constitution of Pakistan. Neither there is any option for this kind of system in the Constitution nor the people of Pakistan can afford any new experiment,” she stated.

She maintained that only a parliamentary system can function in Pakistan, which is as per the Constitution of Pakistan, adding that those who want to do any “experience” should come to the parliament and speak there for amendment in the Constitution.

“I don’t know about the source, who is behind the TV advertisements in favour of presidential system, but they must know that the 1973’s constitution does not allow you to talk about the presidential system because this is not an option in the constitution of Pakistan. If anyone wants to stage any drama, they should first read the Constitution,” she said, adding that Pakistan has already faced four presidents in “uniform”.

She said that the damage, which has already been caused to the country through such “experiments”, is so huge that Pakistan is yet to come out of the losses caused. “What was done to the country by the ‘worst dictator’ General Zia, the whole three generations of Pakistan are now facing its repercussions,” she added.

“If the ‘project Imran Khan’ failed, does it mean that the system of Pakistan failed? If Imran Khan Niazi, through his incompetence, brought Pakistan to the brink where every Pakistanis is ‘cursing’ him, would it also be blamed on the system – parliamentary form of government?” she further asked, adding: “Just because Imran Khan has failed badly and now he is saying that he inherited a bad system, which needs to be changed.”

She maintained: “A person who could not run his own house, how can he manage a country? Imran Khan should stop speaking to the “people” that he inherited a bad system. He is an incompetent and should accept it and go back to his home.”

She further stated that the incumbent “selected” government has failed badly to deliver and the need of the hour is to give a “new and a better team” through a constitutional way, so that the complex problems of the country are addressed and the people are given some relief.

“Currently, there is a parliamentary set up in the country as per the Constitution. Anyone advocating for any other system is unconstitutional, which would be treated under Article 6 of the Constitution — the treason clause,” she warned.

Responding to a question, she hinted at the PPP’s re-joining of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), if its component parties agree with the PPP’s proposal to bring a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Khan in the National Assembly.

“If the parties in the PDM have withdrawn their demands of resignations from the assemblies and are ready to support the PPP’s proposal of no-confidence motion, then decision to re-join the PDM could be reconsidered,” she said.

She said that resignation was also part of the PDM’s initial understanding, but the PPP was of the view that this option could be utilised later after the other options are utilised, particularly, the no confidence motion.

“If they consider that they can work with us jointly on the no-confidence motion, I think possibility is there to re-join the PDM,” she said, adding her party had parted ways when the rest of the party had linked the option of a long march with resignations.

She also condemned the terrorist attacks in Lahore and Islamabad, adding that the PPP was concerned about the rising terrorism incidents.

She said that the PPP has constantly been asking the “incompetent” government to take measures to control the terror attacks and also demanded that a debate in the parliament should be held on the issue instead of discussing this issue behind the closed-door meetings.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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