My appointment as FM hard for party to stomach, says Bilawal in CNN interview
April 14, 2022 01:05 AM
Chairman Pakistan People’s Party Bilawal Bhutto Zardari in conversation with CNN, has said that the PPP worked with a coalition government to oust Mr. Khan through a no-confidence motion, reported 24News HD TV channel.
“He tried to thwart our moves with what amounts to a constitutional coup but the Supreme Court of Pakistan decided against him. Ultimately, the parliament finished the democratic process to vote him out of office.”
Answering a question regarding Chairman Bilawal being a foreign minister under a PM not from his own party, he said that it would be difficult for the party to stomach, being the second-largest member of the coalition.
“However, we do have to work together to address Pakistan’s problems. I would follow whatever the party decides in the better interest of the nation. At this point, all parties that are in the alliance that has defeated Imran Khan must work together for the restoration of democracy, electoral reforms and try to address the economic issues.”
“We absolutely want free and fair elections but in order for them to take place, we must legislate when it comes to the electoral reforms. As everybody knows, the 2018 elections that Khan used to come to power have been widely seen and condemned not only nationally but internationally as rigged and compromised elections that resulted in three years of an autocratic dictatorial rule through the office of Imran Khan. He not only robbed our media of media freedoms but robbed average Pakistanis of their democratic rights that they we had just recently started to enjoy.
“It is a big victory for democracy that we are moving towards electoral reforms and free and fair elections. We are not a selected government like Mr. Khan’s but a government that is truly representative of the people of Pakistan and can decide their fate.”
He said the American people would be able to relate to what Pakistan is going through right now.
“Pakistan just recently experienced our equivalent to America’s January 6th moment. Mr. Khan despite knowing that he had lost his majority in the parliament tried acting through his Speaker to conduct a constitutional coup. He has come up with a big lie of an international conspiracy led by the United States to oust him when the fact is that he is the first PM in the history of Pakistan to have been ousted through constitutional, democratic means. This is a massive victory for Pakistan’s democracy. As far as his support is concerned, little fascists all over the world enjoy their cult following but that does not mean that the majority of Pakistan should be dictated to by these fascist regimes.”
He said as far as Imran Khan’s support in the public is concerned, even though we criticise the last elections as heavily rigged, according to what Khan called the most free and fair elections in history, his position represents 30% of the people of Pakistan’s votes. Whereas, our coalition represents 70% of the people of Pakistan’s votes.
Bilawal said as far as Pakistan’s relations with the West or any other country are concerned, Imran Khan despite being extremely anti-American in his rhetoric when he is out of government, when he was is the government and. Trump was the President of the US, Imran has enjoyed very cordial relations with him.
He said it is true that since President Biden has taken over and following the complexities in Afghanistan, there have been difficulties between the US and Pakistan’s relations.
“Khan is manipulating the series of events to try and create this perception that there is some grand conspiracy when the fact of the matter is that there is none. Our decision to bring a vote of no-confidence was taken much before Mr. Khan’s visit to Russia on the eve of the Ukrainian crisis. We had no way of knowing that Mr. Khan would shake President Putin’s hand as he would be invading Ukraine and as a result there would be some sort of friction is foreign policy.”
“Since Mr. Khan was removed through a democratic process, because he does not have any narrative that allows him to be presented as a victim, he is relying on Pakistanis’ general anti-American sentiment. He is trying to provoke a very dangerous situation where he has declared 70% of the parliamentarians that represent 70% of the people’s mandate as traitors unilaterally. America has had 200 years of democracy to sustain the pressures of this sort of attack. Pakistan’s democracy is very young, new and Mr. Khan’s assault through his big lie and fascist tendencies is indeed a threat to our society.”
Answering a question regarding dynastic politics, Chairman Bilawal said that dynasties absolutely exist and it would be unfair to criticise the former Secretary of State and presidential candidate Hilary Clinton for being involved in politics because her husband was involved in politics etc. You can criticise nepotism and dynastic politics as much as you want but whoever the people of Pakistan decide, that should matter by the end of the day.
As far as Mr. Khan is concerned, his entire party is full of dynasties. His children may be underaged and not involved in politics but in his provincial governments, federal representations and his party, he relies heavily on Pakistani dynasties.
Referring to himself, Chairman Bilawal said that his grandfather was hanged by a military dictator, his mother was assassinated by the connivance of terrorists and a dictator and he was forced into Pakistani politics at a young age. He did not choose this life, it chose him.
For whatever reason one is doing politics, we believe in democracy and that the people should decide. Mr. Khan likes to talk about democracy when in fact he believes in rigging elections and coming to power.