Oct 132017

A technocrat or undemocratic government cannot resolve the issues faced by Pakistan, Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has said. “The masses are cognisant of the incumbent government’s performance and they will make their decision [by casting their votes] in the 2018 general elections,” the premier said after inaugurating an oil and gas project in Attock on Friday. “We need to strengthen democracy because the journey on the path to development cannot continue without stable democracy.” Abbasi, who took over the PM’s office after disqualification of Nawaz Sharif from office in August, claimed PML-N’s performance during the last four years was better than the work done [by the former governments] in the last 15 years. PM Abbasi busy saving Sharif’s skin, says Imran “Initiation of 103 oil and gas projects during the aforementioned period is a sign of better future for the country,” Abbasi said. The project in Attock, other than oil and gas, he added, will offer 50 tonnes of liquid petroleum gas (LPG). The PM claimed that every sector was being provided with the facility of gas. “The government has added more than 10,000MW of electricity to the national power grid during its tenure,” he added. The post Technocrat govt can’t resolve Pakistan’s issues: PM Abbasi appeared first on The Express Tribune. Click for detailed story

Aug 142017
Former Pakistani PM Turns To Court To Challenge His Removal From Office

Former Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has filed petitions with the country’s Supreme Court challenging his disqualification from office over undeclared assets.Environment Minister Mushahidullah Khan, who is also a member of Sharif’s party, said on August 15 that three petitions have been filed with the court by the former premier’s lawyers.“It is our right to seek a review,” the Reuters news agency quoted Jan Achakzai, an official at the ruling PML-N party, as saying. “People of Pakistan haven’t accepted the decision.”Sharif, 67, resigned during his third term as prime minister shortly after the same court ruled on July 28 that he should be disqualified and ordered a criminal probe into his family’s wealth.The investigation stemmed from the so-called Panama Papers leaks in April 2016, when documents from a Panama-based law firm revealed that three of Sharif’s four children owned offshore companies and used them to buy properties in London.According to Achakzai, the appeals seek a review of the disqualification on the fact that two of the five Supreme Court judges, who had already given a dissenting note in an April verdict ruling, were not supposed to sit on the panel that gave the final ruling in July.Within days of the court decision, Sharif moved quickly to have the PML-N’s strong majority in parliament approve Shahid Khaqan Abbasi as his replacement.Sharif held a series of rallies across the country last week, criticizing the court ruling and seeking to whip up popular support.Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of [Read More…]

Aug 092017

ISLAMABAD: Family links to Pakistan’s powerful military and a cabinet stint championing the use of liquefied natural gas (LNG) will probably help new prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi navigate thorny relations with the army and curb rolling blackouts. How Abbasi, the co-founder of a budget airline (Air Blue) and a skydiving fan, tackles those two issues may define his tenure as he seeks to tilt the next general election, due in mid-2018, toward Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). PM Abbasi, army chief meet amid apparent strain in civil-military ties Ousted leader Nawaz Sharif was disqualified by the Supreme Court last month and within days had installed Abbasi as a temporary prime minister. Nawaz then had a change of heart about plans to elevate his brother as long-term leader. With Abbasi, 58, now likely to stay on until the election, the opposition is training its cross hairs on him while voters seek clues as to what he can accomplish in less than a year as the leader of a nuclear-armed nation of 190 million. U.S-educated Abbasi has been frank about Nawaz’s role as the power behind the throne but those close to him expect a slightly different approach to the army. “He is going to repair the relationship and have a better communication channel to the army than Nawaz,” said a senior PML-N official. “Shahid is very pragmatic and aware that the army is there, and you can’t just wish them away.” Nawaz has endured fraught relations with the military during his three stints in power [Read More…]

Aug 072017

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani felicitated on Monday Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on his appointment as the country’s premier. According to a statement, Ghani, in a telephone call, expressed satisfaction at the smooth transition of power, which will foster the democratic process. PM Abbasi thanked his counterpart and told him that the scourge of terrorism is a common threat for both countries. ‘Forced dismissals’ of elected prime ministers must stop: Saad Rafique Pakistan, he added, will work with its neighbours to ensure the security and stability in region. It was also agreed that both countries would join hands to combat the energy crisis in the region to improve economic conditions. Abbasi was elected as premier following disqualification of Nawaz Sharif from office over his failure to disclose his ‘un-withdrawn receivables, constituting assets’ in his nomination papers filed ahead of the 2013 polls. The post Afghan president felicitates Abbasi on appointment as premier appeared first on The Express Tribune. Click for detailed story

Aug 012017

Defeat is a bitter pill to swallow, but Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi seems to have taken it too far by apparently refusing to shake hands with newly-elected prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi. At the end of the National Assembly session on Tuesday wherein Abbasi was elected the new premier, he is seen tugging at Qureshi’s shirt to grab his attention so that they could shake hands. Qureshi turns around and a few words are exchanged between the two leaders. Shahid Khaqan Abbasi elected new PM Then the PTI leader holds back his hands, outright refusing to shake hands with Abbasi. Abbasi, the former petroleum minister, secured 221 votes against Pakistan Peoples’ party’s Naveed Qamar’s 47 and Sheikh Rashid’s 33. Jamaat-e-Islami’s Sahibzada Tariqullah managed to secure only four votes. The election came three days after former premier Nawaz Sharif was disqualified and made ineligible to hold public office by the Supreme Court for hiding assets in his nomination papers for the 2013 general elections. Qamar was contesting from the Pakistan People’s Party, Awami Muslim League leader Rashid was the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s candidate, also backed by the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid. The Muttahida Qaumi Movement, following a meeting with the PML-N leadership, had pulled out its candidate, Kishwar Zehra, and announced that it would support Abbasi. The real impact of Nawaz Sharif’s disqualification The Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl, being an ally of the ruling party, was supporting the PML-N candidate, whereas the Awami National Party abstained from the election process on account of the [Read More…]

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