ISLAMABAD: Nawaz Sharif sees a “virus” in the country’s system that does not allow elected prime ministers to complete their tenures.
Talking to a delegation of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) office-bearers and workers from Rawalpindi at Punjab House on Sunday, the ousted premier regretted that on an average an elected prime minister had served the country only for one-and-a-half years, whereas a dictator’s rule averaged nine years.
Mr Sharif said they all needed to trace the fault in the system so that the country could be put on the right track.
According to a participant of the meeting, the former prime minister expressed concern over “selective accountability” of his family and said he was happy over the fact that he had not been disqualified on charges of corruption or for receiving kickbacks.
He said no evidence of corruption could be found against him despite a thorough investigation into his father’s company.
Mr Sharif once again said he had been disqualified because he had not “received salary from the company owned by my son”.
The daughter of the ousted prime minister, Maryam Nawaz, posted two video clips of her father’s Sunday meeting with the party members on her Twitter account, showing charged PML-N members chanting slogans “Wazir-i-Azam Nawaz Sharif, Hai Quaid Hamara Nawaz Sharif (our leader Nawaz Sharif) and Dekho Dekho Kaun Aaya Sher Aaya (Look who is coming, lion is coming)”.
Former minister Pervez Rashid, newly-elected Senator Asif Kirmani, Senator Chaudhry Tanveer and Minister of State for Capital Administration and Development, Dr Tariq Fazal Chaudhry, were also present at the meeting.
Mr Sharif had returned to Islamabad on Saturday morning from Murree, where he had been staying with his family after vacating the PM House on July 30.
The PML-N has already announced that Mr Sharif will travel to Lahore via the GT Road on Wednesday (Aug 9). Sources said Mr Sharif had discussed the plan with some of his close aides during an informal meeting on Sunday.
Talking informally to reporters on Saturday, Mr Sharif had said that although he had a lot to say on the circumstances surrounding his ouster, he wished to remain silent for now. Taking exception to the recent remarks of former military ruler retired Gen Pervez Musharraf in an interview to BBC, Mr Sharif had challenged him to return to the country and face the public.
In the interview, Gen Musharraf claimed that dictators had served the country better than the civilians and asked whether the courts could ever hold a dictator accountable for his actions.
Published in Dawn, August 7th, 2017