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Imran Khan to announce assemblies’ dissolution date on December 17

After holding back-to-back consultations with his party’s leadership, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan said Wednesday he would announce the dissolution of both assemblies — Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa — on December 17.

In his address to the nation via video link, the former prime minister said he would announce the date for the assemblies’ dissolution during the party’s public gathering at Lahore’s iconic Liberty Chowk.

Soon after his video message ended, sources told Geo News that both assemblies where PTI was in power were expected to be dissolved by December 23.

“Once we dissolve both the assemblies, we will hold elections in the provinces. Also, our 123-125 National Assembly members — whose resignations have not been accepted — will ask the speaker inside the assembly to accept their resignations,” Khan said.

The address came after he consulted the party’s senior leadership today on important political and economic matters that “required his party to take action”.

Following these moves, Khan said as much as 70% of Pakistan would move towards elections and in line with the law, elections should take place within 90 days of the assemblies’ dissolution.

“So understand this: I will announce the date on December 17 and after that, 70% of Pakistan will go into election made. Logic dictates that if 70% of Pakistan will see elections, then the country should move towards general elections.”

“But unfortunately, our leaders are corrupt and convicts. They do not care about what happens to Pakistan and when bad times take over the country, they will exit the country,” he said.

Khan said the coalition rulers were worried that if they step down then another government would be formed and their corruption cases would be reopened.

“Their interests and the nation’s interests are poles apart.”

Gen (retd) Bajwa and NRO II

Lamenting his helplessness, the ex-prime minister — who was voted out in April through a no-confidence motion — said when he was in power, former army chief General (retired) Qamar Javed Bajwa asked him to focus on the economy and not accountability.

Gen (retd) Bajwa told me to grant NRO II to the then-opposition when [the government had to pass laws related to the] Financial Action Task Force. It was Gen (retd) Bajwa who gave NRO II to the then-opposition.”

Addressing speculations that he is seeking help from the establishment, Khan said: “I am not asking anyone for help.” He, however, hoped that the establishment remains neutral.

The PTI chief headed that in these last seven months “PTI was treated with open hostility”.

Khan said he has never seen cases of “big dacoits” being closed in his 70 years of experience. “I am sure that even banana republics don’t do such things,” the ex-premier said.

The PTI chief said no country can progress without rule of law and justice as he claimed that Pakistan was on the “brink of destruction” as there was “no rule of law”.

“Why are we here? Because the poor people are in jail as powerful people are receiving NROs, getting their cases closed, and coming back to the country,” the ex-prime minister said. 

Khan said documentaries have been shot and books written on the corruption of two families that belong to the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP).

“It is so saddening that Suleman Shehbaz came back to Pakistan and addressed a press conference claiming that he was a victim,” Khan said as he asked Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s son the reason behind the death of the people involved in the case.

“How did all the witnesses die of heart attacks in his money laundering case? Someone should investigate this case. Also, Ishaq Dar has also been given a clean chit […] when he was asked for the receipts of his income, he flew abroad on the prime minister’s plane.”

The PTI chief said even the people belonging to the “Zardari mafia” will be forgiven, including his sister Faryal Talpur. “The powerful can only survive here.”

Economy and stability

The cricketer-turned-politician said that anybody who understands the economy knows that the first rule is to ensure there is political stability as “markets can’t perform under uncertain situations”.

“Investors and businessmen are reluctant to invest their money as the risk of default has grown to 100% as compared to 5% which was left behind by PTI,” he added.

Earlier today, Pakistan’s five-year credit default swap —used to insure against restructuring or default — declined significantly by 3,168 basis points (day-on-day) to 5,882 basis points.

“Because of this reluctance salaried people are struggling to make ends meet as electricity prices are currently sky-high,” he said blaming the coalition government for increasing the price of gold to 224.80 per litre which was around Rs150 per litre when PTI was ousted in April.

“We are standing on the brink of destruction,” he said, citing injustice major reason behind the economic crisis,” he maintained.

The ex-premier claimed that all of this has been done under a “conspiracy hatched to destroy Pakistan.”

The ex-premier claimed that all of this has been done under a “conspiracy hatched to destroy Pakistan.”

Khan further added that if a country defaults, then national security is the first area to get affected, stating that everybody knows what will “those who help the country bailout” demand if Pakistan defaults.

A day earlier, former finance minister Miftah Ismail claimed that the chances of Pakistan heading towards default have increased, urging the incumbent government to take steps to avert the looming threat.

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