ISLAMABAD - PPP chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has said that the federal government was spoiling the “good work” by the Sindh provincial government against the coronavirus pandemic.

The PPP leader said that the federal government instead of working with the provincial government was trying to “sabotage the good work done by Sindh government,”

In an interview with the BBC, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that the federal government cannot absolve itself from responsibility of chalking out a strategy by wrongly explaining 18th Amendment.

He said that it was the responsibility of the leadership to take difficult decisions in the times of national crisis but the very first time the federation and the Prime Minister are displaying alienation from the provinces. Replying to a question, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that 18th Amendment gives powers to the provincial government but does not absolve Federal government from forming a consolidated policy on national level but there is a lack of leadership in the federation.

He asked why the federal government did not consider about 18th Amendment “when it wants to snatch administration of big hospitals in Sindh.”

Bilawal said that when the entire world was dealing with a pandemic the federal government had started talking about the 18th Amendment.

He asked if the Federal government had no role left for the health in the country then why there was institutions like National Disaster Management Authority and Federal Health Secretary.

He said that during floods not only one province is affected but the entire country and in wars the whole country fights the war. He said that unfortunately due to lack of leadership in the country there is no national unity in the country in the times of a pandemic.

Bilawal said that Prime Minister cannot hide behind the garb of ‘independent society’ and not decide in the interest of the people of the country.

He said that such statements of the Prime Minister only creates confusion. He said that such statements of Prime Minister were irresponsible.

“Every province is trying to combat the pandemic to the best of its ability and in this situation if you get the message that you are alone in your efforts then this attitude can result dangerous for the federation,” he added.

“There cannot be any carelessness with the lives and health of the people. Imran Khan’s confusion gives an impression that Pakistan is not an independent country. Governments all over the world are avoiding popular decisions and taking tough decisions to protect the lives of their people. Federal government criticised Sindh government, the most successful government dealing with pandemic, just to hide its own inability and incapability,” he said.

He said that Imran Khan should realise that the solution of every problem is not to collect funds. Chairman PPP said that restoration of economy is the responsibility of the federal government like the responsibility to run the economy.  He said that the financial help by the IMF and reduction in oil prices have helped Pakistani economy. The need at the moment is to divert money from development projects to health to deal with Covid-19, he added.

Bilawal said that politics is being done at the moment as the province which is working hard is being criticised and the others where no work is being done are not questioned.

“One thing has been clear from this pandemic that federation will only criticise no matter how good the Sindh government and PPP perform,” he added.