Government with clear mandate essential for overcoming financial woes: President

Karachi, January 14, 2023 (PPI-OT):President Dr Arif Alvi has said that a government with a clear mandate, regardless of which party came to power, was essential and the only solution for Pakistan to overcome its present financial woes, adding that all the stakeholders needed to display cooperation and unity and make strong efforts in order to steer the country out of the present financial situation. The President expressed these views while addressing the 4th Financial Crime Summit held at Karachi, on Saturday.

The Summit was attended by Salim Raza, Former Governor State Bank of Pakistan, Kazi Rahat Ali, Secretary General, Pakistan Freelancers Association PAFLA, and other notables from different walks of life. Talking about country’s financial situation, the President regretted that we had not learnt from the past and other countries had outpaced Pakistan in terms of economic development. He said that political cooperation was needed to overcome the present financial situation and expressed support for the Government’s idea of conserving energy by shutting down the markets in the evenings.

The President highlighted that man’s conscience was the greatest deterrent against crime, and different religions, including Islam, endeavoured to inculcate the spirit of self-accountability. He said that enacting strong laws, ensuring their implementation, apprehending corrupt elements, imposing appropriate punishments and discouraging corruption, both financial and moral, at the societal level were essential to curb financial crimes. The President said that Quaid-e-Azam had also highlighted the prevalence of corruption among the Muslim elites of Indo-Pak sub-continent, adding that collective efforts were needed to make Pakistan a nation that was based on morality and the sayings of the Founding Father, Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

He regretted that pilferage and corruption had crippled Pakistan and we were now reliant upon aid and loans. He said that corruption was prevalent across the world and was not just the problem of developing countries and needed to be curbed by eliminating loopholes from financial laws and systems. The President said that he did not sign the NAB Amendment bill as he believed it to be against the spirit of accountability and justice. He said that under new financial crime laws throughout the world, the accused and the owner of assets has to provide the money trail.

He said that Islamic history was filled with morally and financially upright personalities, adding that Holy Prophet (PBUH) was regarded as “the Trustworthy” among his people, and trustworthiness was an important factor while dispensing the business of the state. The President lamented the irony that instead of bringing greater transparency in governance and financial matters, transparency was being brought into the personal lives of people by leaking their audios and videos. He added that backbiting (gheebat) and social media were creating rifts in society.

The President also underlined that digitalization and digitization would help bring greater empowerment and enhance women’s accessibility in different sectors. He added that Pakistan lacked cyber capabilities and he had drawn the attention of the government and its different agencies to focus on this aspect. He said that we needed to overcome resistance against the adoption of technology and bring attitudinal changes for making fast-paced development.

The President regretted that the global world order was based on vested interests instead of morality and international laws as India was being allowed to perpetrate human right violations and atrocities against its minorities, especially Muslims in India as well as in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) with impunity. He said that Pakistan trusted the world order and global institutions to resolve the Jammu and Kashmir Dispute, adding that the trust might have been misplaced.

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