IMF arm-twisted govt to ‘pay for PTI’s sins’

PM says if you call up a friendly country, they believe we probably want a loan

Our Correspondent September 15, 2022


Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday bemoaned that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) "arm-twisted" the government to pay for the sins committed by the previous government of PTI.

He said the former ruling party had reneged on the pact it had made with the IMF but the global money lender "rubbed our nose in the dirt for it".

The prime minister maintained that the previous PTI regime had committed serious violations of the IMF agreement for which the current government was putting up with the consequences.

“The IMF is making us suffer for the wrongdoings of the PTI government,” he added while addressing a lawyers’ convention in Islamabad.

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Referring to the IMF agreement, the prime minister said that despite being a nuclear power, the country was still walking around with a beggar’s bowl.
PM Shehbaz said if you call up a friendly country, they believed that Islamabad probably wanted a loan.

“Those who were behind us in the region have now gone far ahead,” he added.
Conceding the rising inflation in the country, the prime minister said the economic situation was dire.

“We are trying their best to control inflation. The coalition government worked hard to save Pakistan from bankruptcy,” he claimed.

PM Shehbaz informed the lawyers about the flood situation.

He added that floods had caused havoc in the entire country. “Hardly anyone has seen such a disaster because of climate change. Millions of people are still forced to live under the open sky,” he told the participants.

Also read: Pakistan to receive $1.17bn tranche in three to six weeks: IMF

The prime minister reiterated his call to the nation, particularly the influential and affluent classes. to play their due role to change the nation’s fate through firm resolve and solid actions.

He said the flood water was still causing destruction in Balochistan, leading to the collapse of houses and washing away of crops.

The premier added that even the availability of clean drinking water was a challenge for the flood-affected people.

He said the country was rich with immense resources like Sendak and Reko Diq with capable human resources including farmers, engineers and doctors.

“If we make a resolve, Pakistan will emerge as a great country. It will not come through speeches, rather through will and action,” the prime minister remarked.
The premier said the government was devising a strategy to cope with the swelling needs of gas, considering the upcoming winter season.

He said the previous government failed to sign a gas purchase agreement when it was available at 3 cents per MMBTU compared  with the current 40 cents per MMBTU.

Earlier, PM Shehbaz distributed allotment letters among senior lawyers for residential plots in a housing project and carried out balloting of plots among the federal government employees.

He added that the first phase of the housing scheme had been completed and the long-standing demand of the lawyers had been met.

He further said the housing project for the lawyers’ community had been facing a delay.

However, the premier vowed that the incumbent government would ensure its early completion.

The prime minister said those who had acquired the allotment letters for their residential plots should never forget the flood-stricken people who had lost their dear ones as well as livelihoods.


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