Govt still open, serious for dialogue on Panama investigation

Zahid Chaudhary

Islamabad—As Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Imran Khan is upping the ante to close down the federal capital by the end of this month, the government is seriously mulling to engage with the opposition parties to address their concerns vis-à-vis investigation into Panama Papers.
According to sources, the next few days are very important as the government is likely to first engage with the PPP to sort out matters on the table of negotiations. The government and the opposition have submitted separate bills in the lower and upper house for investigation into Panama Papers.
According to sources, the government has invited the opposition parties repeatedly for talks on the matter but the opposition is avoiding it. The sources said the politics of street agitation has given nothing to the country but hindered its forward march.
The sources said that the government is serious in holding investigation into Panama papers and all other corruption-related cases. However, they regretted that the opposition parties are only targeting the person of the prime minister.
Responding to a question, the sources said that a committee may be constituted or some cabinet members may be asked to
engage with the PPP and other opposition parties in parliament.
They, however, made it clear that the government is not making an offer of talks under any pressure in view of PTI’s rally, “We have seen such rallies in the past and successfully steered out of it. If the opposition especially the PTI sticks to its stance of protest, we are not scared of it. But the PTI will have to understand that finally they will have to come to the table for investigation into Panama Papers as it happened in investigation.”
The sources were also of the view that the elections will be held in 2018 and by that time parties that have governments in provinces should focus on their performance as the people will elect the next government on the basis of performance.
“By unleashing propaganda campaign against the sitting government or through protests or sit-ins, the government can not be de-seated, they said, adding the PM has repeatedly presented himself and his family for accountability and they have always come out clean. Investigation into Panama Papers will also clear his family of all charges,” the sources were confident.

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