Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Friday cautioned that any attempt to repeat the “selection process” against the mandate of the people in the upcoming general elections would make the masses bear the burden of such experiments.
Addressing a party’s workers’ convention in Mardan, the PPP chairman said that the people would have to bear the burden again if a “selection takes place in the general elections” slated to be held on February 8.
In an apparent reference to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Bilawal said that the people had already suffered at the hands of a “selected regime”.
He warned that people would not tolerate any attempt to “manage” the election outcome.
Taking a jibe at Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), Bilawal cautioned the electables from joining his party’s former coalition partner during the government of Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM).
He said that the politics of enrolling electables in the party to bolster its prospects of winning elections was the practice of past, signalling a shift from traditional politics.
However, he was quick to acknowledge the importance of electables, saying they still hold importance, but those who join the Pakistan Mehengai League —a term he uses for PML-N — would no longer remain electable.
He said that this was not to offend them but to apprise others of the “ground realities” which according to the PPP chairman had changed.
The PPP chairman said that it was against the PPP’s principles to “look left and right”, purportedly negating impression that the party had sought any external support from the powers that be.
Read More: PPP, PML-N in slugfest as romance ends
He asserted the party looks to the people for guidance, adding that it was the people’s sole prerogative to decide who should serve them.
The former foreign minister said that PPP would be ready to accept the decision of the people in the general elections slated to be held in less than three months.
The PPP chairman expressed the party’s commitment to ending the politics of hatred and division, aspiring to establish new traditions that promote the progress and prosperity of the nation.
Read More: Bilawal asks rivals to give up ‘selection’ hopes
Bilawal stressed the importance of trusting the people and their political choices, emphasising that the PPP’s fight was not against other political party but against issues like poverty, price-hike, and unemployment.
Recalling the contributions of former president Asif Ali Zardari, Bilawal credited him with restoring democracy, giving identity to the people, and initiating programmes like the internationally acclaimed Benazir Income Support Programme to combat poverty. He urged the expansion of such initiatives for maximum benefit to the people.
Bilawal acknowledged the financial challenges facing the country, attributing historic price-hike, poverty, and unemployment to the existing crisis.
He called for the victory of the PPP in the upcoming elections to establish the “rule of the people,” promising a government that caters to the needs of farmers, labourers, and the youth.
Highlighting the need for a departure from traditional politics, Bilawal criticised politicians stuck in the past and emphasised the PPP’s forward-looking approach.
He outlined the party’s fundamentals, including the manifesto, ideology, and discipline, predicting triumph in the elections.