ISLAMABAD: As the PML-N’s coalition government on Tuesday marked the completion of one year in power, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said the year proved full of challenges and hardships for the ruling clique.
In a series of tweets, the prime minister said, “Today marks the completion of one year since I took oath as PM of a coalition government. This has been a time of massive challenges and difficulties.”
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said passage of a no-confidence vote against Imran Niazi’s government was unprecedented not because PDM came into power but because almost all of Pakistan’s political forces came together to use the forum of Parliament to vote out an unpopular govt through constitutional means.
He further said that the alliance of political parties with different manifestos for a common national cause represented a major step forward in the country’s political evolution. He said reconciliation and cooperation, not confrontation and vendetta marked the new politics post-April ’22.
In another tweet PM, Shehbaz said despite economic landmines laid by Imran Khan and disruptions in global fuel and food supply lines, Pakistan’s economy continued to stay afloat. He stated that all predictions of default had turned out to be false alarms. The premier said sincere efforts were underway to revive the economy.
The prime minister said the coalition govt had been at pains to repair, rebuild and deepen Pakistan’s diplomatic relations that were dealt a severe blow by the Niazi regime. He said he wanted to inform people that over the last one year, they had largely succeeded in establishing Pakistan’s credibility as a partner and friend.
Shehbaz Sharif maintained that Pakistan faced unprecedented floods last year. The decisiveness, with which the government undertook rescue, relief and rehabilitation efforts, provided social protection to millions of people and mobilised international community, had been acknowledged by the world as outstanding.
Recounting achievements of his government, the prime minister said government employed climate diplomacy to present Pakistan’s case on the international stage. As Chair of G77 plus China, government was instrumental in the establishment of loss and damage fund. He said pledges of USD 9 billion at Geneva moot were evidence of government’s successful diplomacy.
Shehbaz added that in the last one year, government made efforts to diversify the energy mix with an aim to provide relief to the citizens. The renewed focus on solar, hydel, and coal power projects was aimed at replacing the costlier sources of power generation with cheaper ones.
He said inflation had hit people hard globally. Geo-strategic rivalries, increase in prices of the fuel and food commodities and historic floods were some of the key factors responsible for inflation. Mindful of its impact, govt expanded social safety net and provided targeted subsidies, he added.
Cherishing the PDM government’s efforts, PM Shehbaz said under the watch of the ruling alliance, Pakistan managed to exit the FATF grey list, thanks to the excellent inter-ministerial coordination as well as support extended by military leadership. It was a long journey but sustained efforts made it possible, he elaborated.
On building the public transport infrastructure, Mr Sharif said government, since its inception in April last year, focused on early completion of the development and transport infrastructure projects in Islamabad. Idea was to provide ease, comfort and affordable mobility to the people, he concluded.
Last year, the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) managed to woo PTI and allied lawmakers as they began a no-confidence move against Imran Khan. His term as premier came to an end on April 10 as the opposition’s no-trust motion against him succeeded, with 174 members out of the 342 voting in its favour.
The next day, Shehbaz Sharif secured 174 votes in a one-sided election in the NA and was named the prime minister after the PTI announced the en masse resignations of its lawmakers. The PDM government’s time in power has been marked by record inflation, and economists fear the country’s economy would go off the rails.