ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf on Saturday said that the first elected government was going to complete its tenure, which was a good omen, and will have far-reaching impact on the country's politics and democracy.
Speaking to a private news channel, Ashraf said that elections will be held on stipulated time and the date will be announced in consultation with the leader of the opposition in the National Assembly.
He hoped that like appointing the chief election commissioner with consensus, both the government and the opposition will keep working for further strengthening the democratic system.
About the creation of South Punjab province, the prime minister said that it was not a political slogan for election campaign but a genuine demand of the people of the region.
He said the government had taken all possible steps and formed a commission for the creation of new provinces. Hurdles should not be created by any stakeholder on the issue, he added.
Commenting on the decision of Lahore High Court regarding construction of the Kalabagh Dam, the premier said that Pakistan was a federation of four units and all such important projects should be initiated with consensus.
He said that the issue was being raised by ‘some people’ at a time when elections were just round the corner. “But those people had done nothing when they were in power for long periods of time,” he added.
The prime minister said that the three provincial assemblies had passed resolutions with consensus against the dam's construction and discussions on the issue, which creates hatred, should be avoided. The project can not be launched with an executive or judicial order, he added.
Replying to a question about government's borrowing, Ashraf said, “There is a big difference in perception and the reality.” The federal government has contained its expenditures, while the provinces have increased theirs, said the PM, adding that the provinces are now getting more funds under the 7th NFC Award.
“Despite inflation, the government's expenditures have increased just by seven per cent,” he said.
Lauding performance of his government, the prime minister said the country was importing wheat when came into power, but now he said, the commodity was being exported, earning foreign exchange.
The added the government has provided food security to the people of the country.