The federal parliamentary system is indispensable for country’s survival, Farhatuallah Babar

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Nuaman Ishfaq Mughal,

Islamabad: Secretary-General of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and Former Senator, Farhatuallah Babar, said that the federal parliamentary system of governance was indispensable for ensuring participation, provincial autonomy and survival of this country. He stated this while addressing a public seminar titled “Parliamentary System of Governance: Challenges and way forward”, organised by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI).

Babar said in the last few months there was a debate which was being generated deliberately whether the parliamentary or presidential form of government suits the country with the aim to present parliamentary system a fail system. He said in the last ten years, there were three general elections held on time, two governments completed their legitimate tenures and system was moving in the right direction. But, one development in this tenure was disturbing in which institutions cross their limits and where two elected Prime Ministers were removed by the Judiciary, which was unfortunate intervention by any institution into other institution, he added.

“Though there are challenges and shortcomings in the current parliamentary system, as no system is perfect, but that does not mean to demolish the whole system instead of fixing the weaknesses,” he said. He called for strengthening the Senate, National Finance Commission (NFC) Award, Council of Common Interest and National Economic Advisory Council for improving the parliamentary system, adding that NFC awards could be linked with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) achievements, improved human right situation and tackling extremism in the provinces.

While commenting on corruption, Babar said the system of accountability itself corrupted, where institutional corruption is on the rise and entire mechanism of accountability lost its credibility and meaning. We should have a law of combating corruption, which should be applicable to all public servants, he added.

Speaking on the occasion, Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz, MNA, Romina Khursheed Alam said that it was the success of the current federal parliamentary system that all political parties arrived on a consensus and passed the historic 18th constitutional amendment and stood on principle position on various issues of national importance. She added that it was unfortunate that only politician are being maligned and portrayed as corrupt through a deliberate propaganda, which should be stopped. While, Barrister Naseem Ahmed Bajwa, a renowned lawyer and author, said that the present system of governance was being drown toward failure mainly due to our poor system of elections, uneducated and incompetent candidates, irresponsible media, lack of a vibrant civil society and lack of effective local government system.

Executive Director, SDPI, Dr. Abid Qaiyum Suleri thanked all the speakers and said that despite having strong parliamentary traditions, the United Kingdom still faced the grave challenges such as Brexit. He said that all political parties should sit together and evolve a consensus around core issues of governance and economy.

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