PM says ready to host grand political dialogue on national issues

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ISLAMABAD, Oct 4 (APP): Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Wednesday said he was ready to host a grand political dialogue to discuss and reach consensus on the ways and means to tackle various challenges being faced by the country.
“Democracy is a process. There come some hindrances. For example, a national economic agenda, which should be above politics and should continue even after the change of any government. There are also some basic problems in NAB law,” the Prime Minister said in an interview with a private television channel (Express News) aired on Wednesday night.
He, however, clarified that such dialogue would be “a political dialogue” of all political parties and not a governmental dialogue. “If my party considers it appropriate, I am ready to host this dialogue,” he added.
The Prime Minister described the current NAB law as a “black law” and
said there was a need to change it through a grand political dialogue.
He said the NAB law was introduced by General Musharraf
• a dictator – to check some politicians.
The Prime Minister said the current NAB law was perhaps the only law in the world under which the accused have to prove them innocent, adding, the law of evidence should be included in the NAB law.
To a question about the appointment of new Chairman NAB, he said, consultation process in this respect was underway.
To a question about civil-military relations vis a vis the latest statement of Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal, the Prime Minister said he did not see any “state within a state”.
He, however, added that as far as the issue of deployment of Rangers at the Accountability Court was concerned, there should be an in-depth investigation.
About the election of former Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif as the President of PML-N, Prime Minister Abbasi said the party leaders and workers wanted him (Nawaz Sharif) to continue to lead the party.
To a question, the Prime Minister rejected the view that Elections Bill 2017 was passed in a haste and maintained that the Bill before its passage was discussed in detail for months in the committees and sub-committees of the National Assembly and Senate.

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, in response to
another query, said there was normal coordination between
the civilian and military leadership and the two sides
continue to interact at various fora including at the National
Security Committee (NSC).
He, however, added that unfortunately some elements
wanted to create friction in civil-military ties, as they do
not want to see stability in the country.
About the Pak-US relations and their demand “to do more”
in anti-terrorism drive, the Prime Minister said there was no
need to do more.
The Prime Minister also recalled his recent meeting with
the US Vice President on the sidelines of UN General Assembly
and said he presented Pakistan’s point of view.
He said Pakistan was fighting a big anti-terror war with
the deployment of 200,000 troops and rendering of huge
sacrifices.
He said Pakistan had used its own resources in this war,
adding, the United States had not even paid the whole amount
of the Coalition Support Fund (CSF), billed by Pakistan.
The Prime Minister said Pakistan did not need to come
under pressure, as no country other than Pakistan had more
interest in a peaceful Afghanistan.
He, however, added that peace in Afghanistan could not be
achieved through war alone and a negotiated settlement was
the only option to achieve peace in the country.
To a question about Ishaq Dar, the Prime Minister said,
he (Dar) would continue to serve as the finance minister till
2018.