Islamabad: The acclaimed All-Party Conference (APC) of the 11-party opposition parties chaired by Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Chairman of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), is being held in the Federal Capital.
Former President Asif Ali Zardari, in his welcome address said that they will sent government packing to restore democracy and save the country. Foundation of a country is laid on democracy, after which prosperity follows, he added.
Asif Zardari also thanked PML-N supremo for accepting the invitation of the PPP, and said that Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif signed the Democratic Charter, and the two sides cooperated to remove Musharraf and pass the 18th amendment.
He further said that the Eighteenth Amendment is a wall of the constitution, and because of this amendment, no one can look at the constitution with evil eyes.
“We have never seen such stringent censorship across the country,” Zardari stated. “This reflects on the weakness of the government. It is impossible to curtail the emerging voices of the media.
The ex-president also especially welcomed PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz, saying he was “fully aware of the hardships you’ve been through and respect that”.
“My solidarity is with Maryam Nawaz Sharif; she is like my daughters, she has suffered a lot in her struggle, and we stand by her.
“My message to Pakistani people is that we have not united together to save democracy in the country and with the press, we will win through this,” he added.
Pakistan has become an experimental laboratory: Nawaz Sharif
Nawaz then addressed participants via video link from London, marking his political comeback after more than a year. He started by thanking Zardari, saying he would not forget the love with which he spoke to him a day earlier.
Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan has become a laboratory for “such experiments” and every child knows that no prime minister is allowed to complete five years of power. It did not even take into account that this strategy destroyed the country’s democratic structure and the public lost confidence in the system.
PML-N supremo said that democracy is in danger and he agrees with Maulana Fazlur Rehman that we need to make this conference purposeful or people will be disappointed. “If we don’t do it [take a step] today, when will we?” asked Nawaz.
When talking about the 2018 general election, he said that the main reason for the current problem is those who “hijack the mission of the people by bringing inexperienced people to power”.
He also reiterated the opposition’s allegations that the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) only conducted a “selective accountability system” under the connivance of PTI.
Moments before the meeting, Bilawal Bhutto in a tweet, said that two years of ‘selected’ experiment have disastrous consequences for Pakistan. Today Pakistan’s opposition parties will unite to hold this regime to account.”
He added Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government has destroyed democracy, economy and foreign policy. Democracy is the best revenge, he added.