Mr Zardari left the presidency with honor and dignity after completing five year tenure in a successful manner, after receiving a farewell reception by the incumbent Prime Minister followed by guard of honor.

He stepped into the presidency with a tag of ‘ten percent’ yet said good-bye to it with honor and dignity. In return, he pledged to extend full support to Mian’s government, reiterating his friendly opposition image. It might be good if such ‘friendly movement’ is for the sake of Pakistan’s populace of one hundred and eighty million people. People come to believe that leadership of both big parties had fooled them by this democratic façade and uses the veil of democracy to serve their economic interests. For the time being, it is hard to conceive that that Mr Zardari would be able to revitalize demoralized PPP by making alive once again.

Unfortunately he seems to have completely underestimated the rising anti-government public segments in two different tenures under Yusuf Raza Gilani and Raja Pervez Ashraf. Can anybody from PPP’s rank dare point it out to him that the real power of PPP lies with left-wing politics. His statement that PPP would do politics only after five years has further disheartened workers and leaders as well. One should be clear about the fact that PPP’s survival lies in sticking to its old philosophy, otherwise PTI is ready to break and bag its vote bank.

The outgoing president gets distinguished with running his PPP government at ‘every cost’ – sometimes by sacrificing his Prime Minister, sometimes declaring ‘his promises (agreements) as not a kind of Hadith’ to be followed religiously. He had a credit of running democracy restored after a long dictatorship but on the other hand and ironically, he ran his PPP as ‘champion of democracy’. The fact is the party was ruled by such turncoats who in past five years tried to eat, drink and be happy. Whereas, sadly the true party loyalists were left in the lurch.

President’s farewell party was quite significant however his speech has generated different opinions. It seems that Mr. Zardari has offered a blank check to Mian Sahib in response for cooperation and support from the ruling party. Having said that, ‘friendly matches’ in the arena of national politics would never benefit the country.

Salman Raza

Lahore, September 12.