Monday September 20, 2021

Shehbaz rejects reports of resignation

Speaking in Geo News programme ‘Jirga’, the opposition leader admitted that he was offered prime ministership twice, while he also has some secrets of this regime.
August 02, 2021

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) President and Opposition Leader in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif on Sunday rejected the reports of his resignation as the party president and said that he has not disappeared from the political scene.

Speaking in Geo News programme ‘Jirga’, the opposition leader admitted that he was offered prime ministership twice, while he also has some secrets of this regime. Shehbaz Sharif revealed that first, former president Ghulam Ishaq Khan and then former president General (retd) Pervez Musharraf had offered to make him the prime minister. He also admitted that politicians had also been used in the past, as it takes two to tango. He said no single individual or a single institution was responsible for a weak democracy in the country, and ‘all are culprits here’ [Is hamam me sab nangay hen].

He stressed the need for learning lessons from the past mistakes and taking the country forward. He said there were only two ways: either we keep ourselves mired in the past, raising slogans of ‘accountability first’ and ruining our mistakes of Bangladesh creation, Kargil or the attacks on democracy, or moving forward for welfare of the nation after admitting our mistakes.

Programme host Salim Saafi asked Shehbaz Sharif if it was not a reality that the party supremo Nawaz Sharif was not ready for compromise with the powers-that-be and he [Shehbaz] was not ready for resisting the establishment. The PML-N president said Nawaz Sharif was the party Quaid and all party leaders take guidance from him. He said difference of opinion was natural in any democratic party. However, he said, we would have to rise above personal liking and disliking to steer the country out of the crisis and take it forward.

When he was asked why he was failing to convince his elder brother [Nawaz Sharif] and his niece [Maryam Nawaz] of his viewpoint about reconciliation, Shehbaz said every matter in his party was decided with consultation, and his viewpoint is known to everyone. He said he believed in natural reconciliation, and he wanted everyone to ignore personal ego and join hands for eradicating poverty from the country.

Shehbaz was asked if he was offered prime ministership in 2018 elections if he abandoned his brother [Nawaz Sharif] and his niece, he said he would not utter any such thing. However, he added, Nawaz Sharif would have been elected prime minister for the fourth time if the party leaders had made a consensus strategy in the pre-2018 election period.

The PML-N president said Prime Minister Imran Khan had been provided all-out support by the establishment. He said if only 30 percent of such support was provided to any government in the past, the country would have been put on the road to progress.

He regretted that Imran Khan had given only inflation and economic destruction to the country despite getting great support from the establishment. He regretted that petrol prices were being increased every other day.

Shehbaz rejected an allegation that he helped his brother Nawaz Sharif flee the country on the pretext of severe illness, though his health situation was not that bad. He said it was propaganda as the government doctors had given the expert opinion that Nawaz Sharif’s health condition needed sending him abroad for treatment.

Regarding the opposition alliance Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), Shehbaz Sharif said the anti-government coalition was formed and even broke up while he was in jail, so he has nothing to do with its breakup. “As the leader of the opposition, I want to unite all the parties together,” he said, and added if the opposition does not gather outside the Parliament, they must gather in the Parliament.