Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari on Friday reiterated his demand to hold general elections in the country within the constitutionally mandated period of 90 days.
Bilawal repeated his party’s firm stance on polls days after reports emerged in a section of mainstream media claiming that the PPP would “adjust” its position on elections in 90 days.
On March 5, the PPP chairman’s statement was shared on its official handle X, formerly known as Twitter: “Chairman [of the] Pakistan Peoples Party @BBhuttoZardari has urged that the general elections should be held according to the Constitution, so that the democratic government can solve the problems of the people.”
Referring to the tweet, a local publication claimed that it was the first time in recent weeks that the PPP called for adhering to the Constitution, without referring to the 90-day deadline.
During an interaction with journalists in Karachi today, Bilawal said: “The PPP demands that the elections be held within 90 days.”
The PPP — which had been the most vocal among all parties in calling for elections within three months — demands that elections should be held at the earliest and as per the Constitution, he added.
Bilawal says that the PPP does people-friendly politics and governance. “Our contest is with inflation, unemployment and poverty.”
Without taking the name of the establishment, the PPP's top leader said that he wanted to give a message to the “puppet makers” that they should stop experimenting on the people of Pakistan.
“Let the people make their decisions,” he added.
Responding to a question about the drive against the PPP, the former foreign minister said that his party responded to the propaganda and character assassinators with “performance”.
Lauding the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), Bilawal said the electoral watchdog proved its “standard and credibility” before the people by its “performance” during the past four years.
“The ECP proved its performance in Daska [by catching rigging],” he added.
According to an investigation report prepared by Joint Provincial Election Commissioner Saeed Gul, the election officials and other government functionaries "did not play their designated role in a requisite manner [and] they were found puppets in the hands of their unlawful masters".
The NA-75 Sialkot-IV by-election held in Daska on February 19 was not held in a fair, free, and transparent manner, read the inquiry report. Later, the ECP declared the Daska by-polls null and void and ordered re-election.
He hoped that the ECP would hold free and fair elections within the Constitutional timeframe of 90 days.
'Ghabrana nahi hai!'
Without naming former prime minister Imran Khan — who is currently incarcerated in Attock jail in the Toshakhana case — Bilawal took a jibe at the chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), saying: “Ghabrana nahi hai [don't panic]”
"I want to say, ghabrana nahi hai to those who are lingering in jail and facing a difficult time.”
The PPP chairman further said, “Those who were imposed on Pakistan attacked the General Headquarters (GHQ) on May 9.”
He added that those who make puppets also have realised that the experiments can’t go further.