Nawaz reservations on selection tranperancy in Sindh, Balochistan

LAHORE: PML-N president Nawaz Sharif has asserted that the process of selecting caretaker chief ministers in Sindh and Balochistan is not transparent and warned that his party will welcome results of only transparent elections.

“We’ll accept elections (results) provided transparency in the election process is visible from day one and this element of transparency is at stake in Sindh and Balochistan,” he told newsmen after a consultative meeting of the party in Raiwind on Wednesday.

He said he felt that attempts were being made to rig the polls and make the electoral process controversial and pledged not to let these efforts succeed. He warned that the country could not afford such attempts.

The PML-N chief regretted that decisions on caretakers in Sindh and Balochistan were being made through collusion without taking the opposition into confidence.

He said the MQM was with the PPP on treasury benches in Sindh till a few days before the end of the term of the provincial assembly but occupied the opposition seats only to install caretakers of their choice.

In Balochistan, he said, the suspended government was restored two days before the dissolution of the assembly for manipulating the interim set-up.

Mr Sharif announced he would not support the present caretaker set-ups in the two provinces and vowed to strongly protest along with other opposition parties and approach courts and other forums against the ‘conspiracy’.

He also urged the Election Commission of Pakistan and the higher judiciary to take notice of what he called the PPP-MQM ‘collusion’ which was against the spirit of the 20th Amendment.

About the failure of political forces to agree on a name for the post of caretaker prime minister, he said “all decisions in democracy are not taken through consensus and if we’ve failed to agree on a candidate the Election Commission won’t”. He said he would not compromise on the candidate just to avert shifting the authority to the ECP for choosing a caretaker premier.

About the completion of five-year term by the assemblies, the former prime minister said it was for the first time in the country’s history that the job had been accomplished ‘without the umbrella of the army’.

Referring to the PPP government’s failure to solve problems of the masses, he said it was time for accountability through ballot.

He blamed dictatorships of the past for the crises the country was facing, but did not make any comment when asked whether Gen Pervez Musharraf should be tried for ousting the PML-N government, murder of Nawab Akbar Bugti and for the Lal Masjid operation.