LAHORE: Chief of his own faction of the Pakistan Muslim League, Nawaz Sharif, has said that his party wants democracy in the country and will not support a “corrupt government” for this purpose.
In a veiled reference to the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, Sharif said that some people were supporting the government and still sitting on treasury benches despite rampant corruption in government departments.
Addressing PML-N workers in Lahore on Thursday, Sharif said corruption in government departments was a crucial issue; people were being appointed on important posts in violation of court rulings.
Referring to political instability in the country, Sharif said the country could not afford another martial law. “I will not become a part of any ‘puppet show’,” he added, however. “We have buried dirty politics forever.”
Quashing the impression that his party was indirectly supporting the PPP-led government, Sharif said that the PML-N only wanted continuity of democracy.
He warned that problems would multiply if those who violated the constitution in the past were not held accountable. “Pakistan was not created for the rule of the establishment,” he added.
The PML-N chief also blamed the government for ignoring the volatile situation in Balochistan. “We have not learnt a lesson from the East Pakistan debacle as the same mistakes are being repeated in Balochistan,” Sharif told the gathering organised in connection with the 104th foundation day of the Muslim League.
The former prime minister proposed that a committee of national politicians and senior parliamentarians be formed to review all issues facing the province and recommend solutions.
Sharif strongly criticised the government for giving former military ruler Pervez Musharraf a respectable exit from power. “It’s a bad precedent that the person who held the constitution in abeyance, attacked the Lal Masjid, killed innocent people and imprisoned judges was given a guard of honour,” Sharif said. “He should have been tried for his serious crimes.”
The PML-N chief said President Asif Zardari had backed out from three written agreements with the PML-N, compelling his party to quit the coalition.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 31st, 2010.