Imran says governor KP's letter to ECP regarding delay in polls raises 'suspicions’
- Former prime minister says people in power using law and order situation to make a case for delaying polls
Former prime minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan said on Wednesday that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Haji Ghulam Ali's decision to write a letter to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) chief regarding delaying the election after the Peshawar attack has raised suspicion that the law and order situation is being used to postpone elections, Aaj News reported.
The KP governor wrote a letter to ECP on January 31, expressing worry over the recent deterioration in the law and order situation.
On Monday, a suicide bomber blew himself up inside a crowded mosque next to the Police Lines in Peshawar, in a highly fortified security compound, the latest in a string of attacks targeting police.
Addressing the nation via video link, the former premier said the governor shouldn't have written the letter.
"They [people in power] are using the Peshawar incident to delay the polls," he said adding: "If they succeeded in delaying the election, it will be disastrous for the country."
PTI chief claimed that the government wants to use the rise in militant attacks as a reason to delay elections in the country.
"They are afraid that Imran Khan will win if the election is held on time," he said.
The former premier said that delay in announcing the poll dates will be a violation of the constitution. "Article 6 of the constitution will apply to them if the elections are delayed," he remarked.
Making a case for the timely polls despite the rise in militant attacks, he said: "Militancy was also present in 2013 and 2018 but polls were not delayed."
Questioning the government's performance, he said I want to ask this government how can you hold us responsible for the attack in Peshawar when we are not in power.
"I can answer for the time when we were in power. But the question is why didn't these attacks happen when we were in power?" he asked.
"You can not hold us responsible for the terror attack as we are not in power," he reiterated.
In a cabinet meeting earlier today, PM Shehbaz said operations Zarb-e-Azb and Radd-ul-Fasaad had “swept away terrorism from Pakistan” and blamed the recent rise in terrorism incidents on “the former government in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa”, which was led by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), although he did not name any party.
He questioned the “misuse” of funds by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government and criticised it for failing to “create defences against terrorism.”
“The federal government cleared the NFC (National Finance Commission) award for KP on priority every year but still the province is not able to deal with terrorism. Where did the funds go?” he questioned.
He was of the view that if the government failed to take corrective measures, the spike in terror incidents would spread all over Pakistan.
“We will deal with terrorism. This is the top priority for now,” he said. “We cannot forget the sacrifices and support given by Pakistanis.”
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