PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Saturday called upon all government allies to “quickly announce their separation from the coalition if they wish to avoid committing treason” against the country.
“Akhtar Mengal has played a positive role. Now there is no valid reason for him to stay with this government,” said Bilawal, adding: “I hope he will stick to his decision.”
Bilawal’s words came three days after Balochistan National Party-Mengal leader Akhtar Mengal announced that his party was breaking its alliance with the ruling coalition.
Following the announcement, government representatives, chiefly defence minister Pervez Khattak, have been tasked with placating Mengal and bring him back into the fold.
Bilawal, in the media briefing, said that Prime Minister Imran Khan’s opposition to the 18th constitutional amendment and the National Finance Commission award to the provinces is now “plain for all to see”.
“He is even against the 1973 Constitution,” the PPP chairman claimed, censuring the government for “speaking against the 18th Amendment and NFC award while on a visit to Sindh”. He said that the premier “should have at least stopped to think of where he is” before speaking out against the province. Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that cutting Rs229 billion from Sindh’s share amid coronavirus pandemic is unfair. He said that Centre should have announced a coronavirus package for all provinces.
Bilawal said that President of PML-N Shahbaz Sharif will convene All Parties Conference after recovering from the novel coronavirus to discuss NFC award. Notification of NFC award issued by the federal government is illegal and opposition will present a united stance on the award, he added.
Bilawal said it was highly regrettable that the premier likened Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah to a “dictator”.
“I have been saying since the beginning, their true face has started to reveal itself,” the PPP chairman said. He said that “for humanity’s sake” the premier should not have attacked the province at a time when it is important for all stakeholders to unite in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
“The Lady Reading Hospital is run by a relative of his. They should try to compete with Jinnah Hospital,” said Bilawal.
He added that the government would be hard pressed to find even one hospital at par with the quality of the National Insititute of Cardiovascular Diseases. He said if the government is able to point out even one that comes up to its standards, the province will surrender control of all three hospitals sought by the government – the National Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases, Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre and the National Institute of Child Health.