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Published Date: Apr 17, 2013

SDPI Press Release (April 17, 2013)

Presenting
seven point PMLQ manifesto, the party’s leaders have said that PMLQ
pledge elimination of terrorism, education for all, better management of
energy, employment for youth, empowerment of women, revival of economy and
elimination of corruption. 

Senior
leaders of Pakistan Muslim League Quaid-e-Azam (PMLQ) including Secretary
General, Mushahid Hussain Syed, Information Secretary, Kamil Ali Agha, and
Incharge Women Wing, Farrukh Khan were speaking at a seminar on PMLQ manifesto
here on Wednesday.

The
event organized by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) was sixth in
series of seminars, planned to bring manifestos of political parties into
discussion and assess their impact on electorates in run up to the general
elections. Moazzam Bhatti of SDPI moderated the proceedings. Giving
introductory remarks, Dr. Abid Suleri, Executive Director, SDPI expressed his
concerns over recent attacks on political parties, which he said, are serious
threat to democracy and can jeopardize the whole election process in the
country.

Presenting
salient features of manifesto, Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed identified
extremism and terrorism as the most important challenge facing Pakistan and
proposed to revise and redefine the ‘National Security’ paradigm. “Notion of
national security in today’s Pakistan has to include non-military dimensions
such as economy, energy, education, food security, parliament, media, judiciary
as key component of national security,” he explained.

With
a promise to combat extremism and eliminate terrorism in the country, he
proposed establishment of ‘National Security Council’ along with an effective
‘Counter Terrorism Strategy’ executed through lead organization based in Prime
Minister Secretariat. He also underlined the need for enhanced cooperation and
synchronization of civil and military, center and provinces and within various
law enforcement agencies. Citing Sri Lankan example he said that extremism can
be eliminate through strong political will, a broad national consensus, getting
media on board and support from international community.

Briefing
on party legacy, Mushahid Hussain said that Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali, Allama
Muhammad Iqbal and Madar-e-Millat Fatima Jinnah “are our role models and
we will move forward fulfilling their mission”. He said PMLQ aspires
to build a democratic Pakistan through a human rights agenda which is inclusive
and promotes a just, tolerant and pluralistic society.

He
expressed concerns over deteriorating security situation during election
campaign and said that on  PMLQ request, interim government is going to
hold a high level meeting with political parties to ensure safety and security
of candidates and voters during the elections.

In
the field of education, PML-Q promises to provide free education to all. He
also promised to form a special parliamentary committee to address all
legitimate interests and concerns of free media including a comprehensive
insurance policy for journalists. 

Talking
about the policy on energy crisis, Kamil Ali Agha said that said that energy
crisis in Pakistan has risen out of mismanagement and corruption. He said that
additional 10 percent resources given to provinces in NFC award must have been
given to energy sector to remove circular debt.

Briefing
on Women Empowerment, Furrukh Khan informed that PMLQ has empowered women
through allocating 33 percent seats in parliament. She said that party would
establish women protection centers for poor, old aged and displaced women in
all major cities.

Speaking
as discussant, Dr Muhammad Islam, Dean Iqra  University Islamabad said
that majority of voters don’t vote on the basis of manifestos and hence
manifestos has little relevance in political dynamics of Pakistan. He said that
PMLQ manifesto has elements of ritualism and symbolism and emphasize on legacy
of Pakistan movement. He also pointed the absence of rural area development in
the manifesto.

Senior
Analyst Lt-Gen (Retd) Talat Masood emphasized raising the conscious of people
and holding parties accountable for their promises if they promise false
promises. He also pointed towards improving relations with the neighboring
countries and promotion of bi-lateral and intraregional trade into manifestos.