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March 8, 2021
Pakistan Politics South Asia Top Stories

PPP Senator questions PM’s prolonged absence from Senate

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) Senator Sherry Rehman on Thursday urged Prime Minister Imran Khan to attend Senate sessions and explain as to why the opposition was not taken into confidence regarding the implementation of the National Action Plan (NACTA).

She expressed these views while condemning a suicide attack targeting a police van outside the famous shrine of Data Darbar which claimed multiple lives.

“We pray for the victims of the gruesome Lahore blast and strongly condemn it,” PPP parliamentary leader in Senate Senator Sherry Rehman said.

“Unfortunately, terrorism has been escalating in the month of Ramadan but the PPP and the opposition have not been taken into confidence regarding the implementation of the National Action Plan (NACTA), neither has the prime minister issued any statement in this regard,” she said, adding that it took nine months for the National Security Committee to be formed.

Urging that Prime Minister Imran Khan should attend the Senate, Rehman asked, “Why does the PM not visit the Senate? He has remained consistently absent from the Senate as the country faced mammoth challenges including inflation, poverty and terrorism.”

“Being the upper house of the parliament, which ensures that the rights of all provinces are protected, it is our right and also our responsibility to seek answers and get briefed,” she remarked.

“Evidently, the government has failed to steer the country forward even though it repeatedly assured that everything was fine and rosy. It is failing to grasp that the debt-laden country is sinking into an economic turmoil with each passing day. Bread and pulses have become an unaffordable luxury while parents are unable to send children to school due to expensive conveyance costs after the gas and petrol price hikes,” Senator Rehman said.

“Moreover, we hear that the FBR has received $400 million from the World Bank to bring tax reforms to raise tax compliance which can take Pakistan’s revenue potential to 26% of GDP but what is happening on the ground? Instead of bringing the elites into the tax net, amnesty schemes are being introduced to whiten black money and cater to friends’ lobbies,” she added.

Senator Rehman, who is the vice president of PPP, lamented that for eight months the government kept dithering over a decision regarding the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and now the conditions have become more stringent.

“Simultaneously, Pakistan’s future and governance have been auctioned off after appointing officials from international agencies which is unprecedented for this country. These officials will now be involved in all the decisions from budget-making and commodity prices to interest rates and debts. Clearly, the government’s new master is IMF,” she concluded.