There exists a widely-held perception that the outcome or the result of the scheduled Feb 8 general election has already been decided by the country’s powerful establishment. According to which, the nation will go the polls on Thursday just as a “formality”, so to speak.

It is also claimed that Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) will secure enough seats to head coalition governments both at the Centre and in Punjab. Therefore, the result of this general election is a foregone conclusion.

Never before in the history of the country can anyone predict the result of a general election with such astounding certainty. But the question that needs a plausible answer is whether or not such a state of affairs will augur well for the future of democracy in the country.

Needless to say, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is no longer in a position to nurse any legitimate ambitions to return to power through the Feb 8 elections owing to a variety of reasons, including the May 9 events. PTI is therefore paying the price.

Its electoral prospects are therefore certainly not bright, to say the least. It is therefore quite likely that the formation of the next government will not lead to creating conditions that are critical to obtaining political stability, which is a sine qua non for economic stability.

In other words, political stability is an essential condition or a requirement that is absolutely necessary to help the country achieve, among other things, increased inward foreign exchange flows in the shape of FDI.

I, as a very old student of economics and finance, can therefore state with a measure of certainty that nothing but higher foreign investments can help the government fix the economic mess in an effective and meaningful manner. Hence the need for political stability at all cost.

Abu Adnan (Karachi)

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024


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