Out with the old, in with the new

On 11th May, 2013, the people of Pakistan spoke with one voice, OUT WITH THE OLD, resulting in the loss of PPP in the elections and a victory for PML-N.

The citizens proved that democracy can work in this land of the Pak and the Pure. The incompetent and corrupt government, dominated by PPP was booted out. Along went The Feudal Lords and the rich and the powerful, who have been the Puppet Masters of our politics for the last six decades. In came the ‘failed twice’ Nawaz Sharif for the third time.

The voters, especially the educated youth, who were perhaps voting for the first time, also backed Imran Khan and his PTI party and made it one of the leading parties in the country.  The result might not have been the tsunami that the Great Khan had promised and expected, but after wandering for years in the barren deserts of Pakistan’s politics, the result was much better than the small trickle stream of the past. The PML-N, its leaders and senior party members had repeatedly taunted voters, that if they found the PPP government to be corrupt and incompetent, they should not vote for them in the coming elections. And this is exactly what happened. From the ‘Hot Favorite’ of the past, PPP lost heavily and fell to a dismal position.

But sadly, instead of learning from past mistakes, Nawaz Sharif and his PML-N government repeated the same mistakes that had led to their dismissal twice and Nawaz Sharif, the thrice-elected prime minister, was dismissed by the Supreme Court, for the third time, for corruption.

Today, many political analysts feel that this could also be the ‘Twilight of the PML-N’, as it drifts through the choppy and treacherous waters of Pakistan’s politics, without a captain or a rudder to steer it.

Now that Nawaz Sharif is out, what can we expect from the new government that will be sworn in 2018? The new parliamentarians will routinely vow to uphold the Constitution and that no military intervention would be acceptable or allowed.

This, no doubt, will be very commendable, but it will be refreshing if an extra paragraph is added in the oath, in which all elected members would resolve to eliminate the prevalent octopus of corruption, nepotism, the VIP culture that is destroying the moral fiber of Pakistan. Also that they would deny to themselves the luxury cars, the scandalous ‘perks and privileges’ and all the other evils that go with bad governance.

The question is, Will the new government that is elected in 2018 be able to pull the country out of the quick sand that is pulling it down? Will it be able to introduce good governance?

Would the new government be able to remove the stigma of the Quaid’s country being referred to as the most dangerous nation in the world and a breeding ground for terrorists.

Would it fulfill the clarion call of Jinnah’s “Faith, Unity and Discipline” and put this country onto the World Stage, where it could stand proudly in the League of Nations, as a peaceful, progressive and prosperous Nation?

Would it be able to stand up to the challenges of the Hidden Hands and unite this splintered Nation and bring an end to the corruption and sectarian violence?

Would it be able to grapple the looming economic and power crisis and all the seeds of evil that have been sown into our system of governance by the past corrupt and incompetent governments?

Would the new Prime Minister take action against all those parliamentarians who evade the rules and manage to get  elected to the National Assembly on false declarations and are loan defaulters and tax evaders or will he allow the NA to become the stable of horses and mules of the past?

These were not easy questions to answer, as many past governments, both civil and military, including Nawaz Sharif’s party, did not succeed in this ‘Mission Impossible’ and failed to unite the Nation and establish Good Governance through a clean, corruption free government.

The past election was another defining moment for Pakistan and the last chance for Nawaz Sharif to establish Good Governance, the Rule of Law, bring an end to loadshedding and establish true democracy in the country.

But as we approach the end of 2017, it seems that the coming elections will be a repeat of the same, as the former PM has stated that his brother, Shehbaz Sharif, will be the next Prime Minister. As such, it will be the same old rancid wine, in the same old bottle, but perhaps with a different label. Though the performance of the present government is better than those of the past, but it has still failed to fulfill the Great Expectations of the Beloved Awam and improve the quality of life of the ordinary citizens.

And with a new Commander-In- Chief in the US, we could once again hear the sound of the bugle and marching boots and witness the marching of the Yankee Doodle, whistling ‘When the Saints Go Marching In.’ to make this nuclear nation safe for US.

(Email: trust@helplinetrust.org.pk)

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