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Sherpao urges govt to hold early elections

15 January, 2012

PESHAWAR: Pakistan People's Party (Sherpao) Central President Aftab Khan Sherpao Saturday urged the government to hold fresh elections, adding that the country would drift towards anarchy if the present setup stayed in place any longer.

He made the statement while addressing the party's provincial convention at his residence, which was attended by party leaders from across the province and tribal areas.

"Free and fair elections should be organised under the supervision of an independent Election Commission," Sherpao said.

He said that Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani had "lost moral authority" to rule the country following "years of misgovernance and reign of corruption." However, the PPP-S leader warned non-democratic forces, an indirect reference to the military, against any unconstitutional step.

Sherpao declared both the provincial government in Peshawar and federal set-up in Islamabad as "inefficient" and added that both had ignored people's problems and "focused on corruption." He was more critical of the ruling Awami National Party (ANP) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa than the PPP, since he believed they had let down the Pakhtun nation.

He added that it was shameful for the Pakhtun nation that Transparency International declared Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as "the most corrupt province" in Pakistan and laid the blame on the ANP.

Sherpao called upon nationalist forces to join him in a movement for the rights of the Pakhtun nation. He promised the disheartened elements within the ruling ANP and other nationalist forces seeking new leadership that he would guide the Pakhtuns out of the current crises. He also pledged that he would stand by the Pakhtuns who were striving hard to provide them a vision and a clear path to salvation and a better future.

"We need a national movement to seek solution to our problems. We need to heal the wounds of the Pakhtuns and it is possible only when a sincere and honest leadership is followed. I pledge not to disappoint you," Sherpao said.

Delegates at the convention were hopeful that the PPP-S would come into power both in Khyber Paktunkhwa and Centre in the next elections at the expense of the ANP. Prominent ex-ANP leaders from Swabi were also among those present at the gathering.

End.

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