Not only has the clarity about country’s economic indicators, including an increase in foreign exchange reserves of State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), given a meaningful boost to country’s stock exchange, it seems to have also arrested, albeit temporarily, the economic slowdown, adding to the forward-looking expectations of small and big businesses alike.

It can be termed the harbinger of long-awaited economic recovery. One must not, however, ignore the fact that the recently discovered political clarity too has played a no less important role in the rise of stocks, so to speak.

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) in particular deserves commendation for ending protracted political uncertainty in the country by strongly rejecting media reports that elections could face further delay and unveiling the final delimitation list of National Assembly seats.

But it must take into account the fact that while political stability is quite discernable on the country’s political landscape, the objective of political correctness, arguably, still remains elusive in view of the fact that some political parties, including Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), are protesting against the absence of a level playing field for them.

But it is also true that the ECP is effectively defending its role and actions against a growing chorus of criticism.

Last but not least, that the country’s political atmosphere is becoming highly charged as almost all political parties entering the election coliseum is a fact.

It is quite likely that some, if not all, political parties and their candidates will be spending a lot of money on their election campaigns, much beyond what the ECP or the electoral law has actually stipulated for them.

In my view, however, politicians are free to go to any length insofar as their election expenditures are concerned, but they must not lose sight of the fact that it is, of course, every politician’s right to electioneer, but taxpayers should not be paying for it.

Abu Adnan


Copyright Business Recorder, 2023


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