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President Zardari stresses for ‘collective political wisdom’ on national issues PDF Print E-mail
ISLAMABAD, March 22 (APP): President Asif Ali Zardari on Tuesday, calling for a national dialogue on energy and economic issues, urged the political parties to rise above politicking to avert any damage to democracy.“Let political forces stop challenging each other, merely for political point-scoring. It only weakens democracy in the long run,” the President said in his address to the joint sitting of the Parliament.President Zardari referred to the restoration of 1973 Constitution as a great achievement and said it showed that the political leaders can deliver.
“We will uphold the supremacy of the Constitution and the Parliament ... We will not permit any one to usurp the powers, that rightly belong to the Parliament,” the President categorically stated.
President Zardari in his address covered all important aspects of governance and achievements since the PPP-led coalition government came into power. The President earned a rare distinction of being the first democratically elected head of state to address the Parliament’s joint sitting for the fourth consecutive year.
The President stressed for the need of “collective wisdom” to tackle the serious issues of national economy and energy.
He said that national consensus was required on resolving issues,for including energy shortage, circular debt, taxation reforms, restructuring of public sector entities and documentation of economy.
He warned that future generations would inherit these problems if not addressed through collective wisdom now.
He invited all political parties for a national dialogue and to take “tough decisions”.
On energy issues, the President said urgent steps had been taken to meet the energy challenge with the addition of 1,800 mega watt power to the national grid during last two years.
He referred to the use of alternative energy sources, start of a pilot project to exploit Thar reserves, ongoing work on 970 MW Neelum Jhelum Hydro Project, ground-breaking of the 4500 MW Bhasha Hydel Project next month and upgradation of Tarbela Dam, which would be completed by year’s end.
Zardari said that the government believed that all state organs should work within their parameters, as laid down in the Constitution.
He urged the government and the political parties to strive by keeping their egos aside.
“The task of the leadership is to unite, not divide,” he said.
President Zardari cited Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto’s quote in her last book which stressed for reconciliation as “It is time for new ideas. It is time for creativity; It is time for bold commitment. There has been enough pain. It is time for reconciliation.”
The President also strongly condemned the desecration of Holy Quran by a fanatic in Florida.
“We condemn this act in the strongest possible words. It is a serious setback to the efforts at promoting harmony among civilized communities throughout the world,” the President said.
The moment President Zardari raised the desecration issue, the Opposition staged a walkout from the Parliament.
He called upon the Parliament to adopt a resolution urging the United Nations to play its due role on this issue.
President Asif Zardari also congratulated the parliamentarians for the unanimous passage of the 18th and 19th Constitutional Amendments for transferring the powers from the President to the Parliament.
 
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