PPP counsel's emphasis on Senate secret ballot, incompatible with Bhutto’s ideology: Shibli

ISLAMABAD, Feb 22 (APP): Minister for Information and Broadcasting Senator Shibli Faraz on Monday said that emphasis on secret vote balloting in Senate elections by Pakistan People’s Party counsel Mian Raza Rabbani was incompatible with the Charter of Democracy (CoD) and ideology of former Prime Ministers Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto.

Talking to media outside the Supreme Court, he said Senator Raza Rabbani, representing the PPP in Supreme Court during proceedings of open vote reference took the plea which was repugnant to the CoD clauses, inked by Ms Benazir Bhutto and added it tantamount to throwing the agreement in dustbin.

He said it was evident that both parties were opposing people-friendly legislation and had now retracted the CoD.

He took leadership of Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) to task for their inclination to continue past dirty practice of sale and purchase of votes in Senate elections.

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He said the PPP leadership had already initiated the bidding process for vote purchase by making open offers of money despite lacking requisite numbers to sail through their candidates in Senate elections and added PPP was even claiming victory of former Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani despite not having required numbers.

He said the plundered public money by both parties during their respective tenures was being utilized in purchasing loyalties of other parties. The sale and purchase of votes had an adverse effect on national politics, he added.

He said specific people, having entry to Parliament with influence of money, could not be considered as the real representatives of the people. Accusing public representatives in sale and purchase of votes don’t augur well for future generations, he added.

The Minister said Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) had laid foundations of clean politics in the country and was still making efforts to rid the country of menace of corruption and added PTI had been striving hard for the last some decades to bring about transparency in politics.

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He said Election Commission was independent, in real terms, for the first time in country’s history.

Responding to a question, he said the PPP and PML-N had retained their seats in by-elections. Prime Minister Imran Khan and his cabinet members had no link any business, he said adding Cabinet members were not allowed to involve any business activity.

He said PTI had expelled its 20 MPs in 2018 on allegations of vote sale and purchase.

He said the corrupt system could not be rectified with a magic wand in short span of time, adding PTI firmly stood for its stance.