Fazl calls for fresh polls; warns against tampering with 18th Amend

Says no room for compromise, one is either with rulers or Pakistan

By: News Desk
Published: 03:22 PM, 2 Jul, 2020
Fazl calls for fresh polls; warns against tampering with 18th Amend
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JUI-F chief Maulana Fazl-ur-Rehman on Thursday said the 2018 elections and the government formed as a result were a farce and the parties, which had decided to give the setup a chance, regretted their judgement, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

He said both supporting and opposing the government were confused, but added that there could not any compromise or a middle path on the issue. “You are either with the rulers or with Pakistan.”

Addressing a press conference in Multan, he cited the attacks on 18th Amendment as well as the NFC Award and said the PTI government was making noncontroversial issues controversial.

He warned that any curbs on provincial autonomy by modifying the 18th Amendment would create a sense of deprivation in provinces and fuel the nationalist sentiments.

The 18th Amendment was one of those one or two amendments which were unanimous, the senior politician reminded the journalists.

The Constitution does not allow any cut in the provinces’ share under the NFC Award, said Fazl as he mentioned the federal government’s move regarding slashing the amount and pressing the provincial governments for further cuts.

In reply to a question, he also rejected the talk about local government polls and called for fresh general elections, saying it was a matter of the country’s survival. Nothing was acceptable under the current bogus assemblies, the JUI-F chief said and added that all the local government talk was an attempt to distract the people.

He observed that about which accountability the government talked about as it had lost the people’s trust.

The PTI first formed an Ehtesab Commission in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa but later dissolved the newly-formed body because the government ministers were going to face accountability.

Referring the BRT Peshawar project and the Billion Tree Tsunami, he added that the PTI government was taking refuge in stay orders.

“It is easy to catch thieves as all the thieves are in your cabinet,” remarked Fazl as referred to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s repeated claim that he is here to capture the plunderers.

About the erstwhile FATA, Fazl said the people had been left helpless. “There is no land record in FATA except 1 or 2 percent area,” he said with reference to the recent clashes in different parts of the region over land disputes.

The old system was abolished but hadn’t been replaced with the new laws, he said about the situation since the merger of the tribal areas into Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

It is not for the first time that Fazl has warned against tempering with the 18th Amendment. Last month, he had said after an APC in Islamabad that the government statements about the 18th Amendment were very alarming and they would not accept any reduction in the NFC Award share of provinces.

“The change in the NFC Award is actually a conspiracy to roll back the 18th Amendment which would be resisted,” said the JUI-F chief.