PRESIDENT’S ADDRESS TO THE NATION
(20 NOVEMBER 2002 )
In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful,
My Pakistani brothers and sisters
As you know the general elections have been held. First of all I would like to congratulate the MNAs and MPAs who have been successful in the elections. I also heartily congratulate Chaudhry Ameer Hussain and Sardar Yaqub sahib on their election as speaker and deputy speaker of the national assembly. I pray that may Allah enable them to serve the nation with sincerity and honesty.
Now I would like to present before you my personal conduct and performance of my government during the past three years. The governments are run with the confidence of the people. The people lay their future in the hands of the government. It is incumbent upon the rulers to honour the people’s confidence and fulfil their promises.
Allahtala says in ayet no.34 of Sura Bani Israel in the Holy Quran: “Wa Afu Bil Abd Annal Ahada Kana Masula”. Its English translation will be: always fulfil your promises. No doubt you will be questioned about your promises.
Ya hayyolazina amanoo afu bil qaulay. Sura Almaida Ayet No.1
Its translation :
O believers act upon what you say.
Now I would like to throw some light on the promises I made. You can judge how far I have kept my promises. What has been my personal character? It is the duty of all the rulers to be truthful.
I am answerable for my personal character because I am the custodian and I consider my office as a trust. Now you have to decide whether I have ever told a lie. Whether I have gone back on my promise. Al hamdolillah I have always spoken the truth and kept my promise. About the local government I remember that on 23rd march 2000 I had promised that the I shall make an announcement about the local government plan on august 14, 2000. That announcement was made on 14th august. Then I had said that in December 2000 local bodies elections would be held and the elections did take place in December. I had said that local governments will be established on 14th of august, 2001 and exactly these governments came into being on 14th august 2001. According to the supreme court verdict I had promised to hold elections and that promise too I have now fulfilled. The elections have been held within the stipulated period of three years.
I took the nation into confidence about Kashmir. I honoured the confidence reposed in me. I also took the people into confidence about Afghanistan and I am still following the same policy.
As far as my personal character is concerned, I am answerable to Allah and to you. I had declared my assets three years back. Today again I am declaring my assets.
No member of my family got any undue advantage during these three years. I also met my domestic expenses from my own pocket. I have only received my salary as army chief. I have never received any salary as chief executive or president. Whenever I went on tour abroad I only got the allowances that were admissible. I visited America. During my seven day stay I got in all 342 dollars. Recently I visited Saudi Arabia and got 30 dollars for a day and a half stay.
I never took any friend or member of my family on foreign tours for a joy ride. I never made undue recommendations for anybody. I took all decisions on merit. I never, even for once, passed any wrong orders to public sector corporations, banks, institutions. This reflects my personal character.
As for the question of being the custodian of trust this is enjoined by Islam that there should be no breach of this trust. Alhamdo lillah I am returning back the national trust to the representatives of the nation. Not only that I am returning the trust, I am returning it in a better shape and state. As a proof of it, I would like to draw a comparison between the situation as it obtains in the country today and the situation inherited by us in October 1999.
I want to remind you about the state of affairs as it existed on 12th of October 1999. I do it because we quickly forget the past. I would like to briefly remind you about it. What did we inherit? Pakistan was about to be declared a terrorist country or a failed state. This danger was confronting us. The ship of the country was facing a severe storm and no way out was in sight. The economy was faced with default. Banks and financial institutions had been looted and plundered. High government officials were involved in corruption. All government institutions, namely PIA, Steel Mills, Railways, KESC were about to be declared bankrupt. The method of governance was getting from bad to worse.
Personal interests were getting precedence over national interests. All the IPPS – independent power producers, the electricity generating institutions particularly hub was entangled in a dispute with the government. The court cases about it were bringing bad name to the country in the world. The people’s foreign currency accounts were frozen and the foreign investors had lost confidence in Pakistan. Democracy had become politics of hatred and personal animosity. The country had to experience four governments and three caretaker governments during a period of eleven years. During this period, the prime ministers were dismissed seven times ad the presidents twice. One chief justice and one chief of army staff was shown the door. The situation was so worse that even there was an assault on the supreme court. Sectarian terrorism was at its height, religious extremist organizations had a free hand and the government institutions were afraid of them.
They never dared to touch them. Pakistan was constantly under Indian pressure. The overall atmosphere was that of dismay. As for Pakistan’s economic conditions, we had foreign exchange reserves of about one billion dollars. But out of this amount, the government’s own reserves accounted only for 300 or 400 million dollars. If they are converted into imports, these reserves were barely sufficient for about four weeks of imports. Foreign debts had gone up to 38 billion dollars and were increasing at the rate of one and a half to two billion dollars per annum. As a result 63 percent debts in 1991 stood at 442 billion rupees, which increased to 1642 billion rupees in 1999.
This went on increasing at the rate of 16 percent annually. The tax recovery six years before 1999 was stagnant between 250 billion and 300 billion rupees. The exports in eight years before 1999 stood at between seven and eight billion dollars. This too remained stagnant at this figure. Inflation rate between 1990 and 1999 was on an average 10 percent. Fiscal deficit stood at seven percent, which was too high. It means our expenses were far too greater than our earnings. Debts were increasing. Exchange rate was instable, as compared to the dollar. The value of rupee in 1988 was equal to nineteen rupees per dollar. This ratio went up to 54 rupees in 1999. This was the situation resulting from our own self created difficulties that we inherited. Further economic jolts that we had to face during our three years in office were in four spheres.
There was recession in the world, second was the continued drought, third the eleventh September incident, which had negative impact on our exports and investment and the fourth jolt was that of warlike situation imposed on us by India. These were the additional jolts to our economy. By the grace of Allahtala, we faced all these difficulties.
Now I would like to tell you about the performance of my government. What we achieved during these three years could not be achieved by the previous governments during the past eleven or twelve years. Having faith in Allah we accepted the challenge of reconstruction of Pakistan and with sincere intentions, patriotism and love for the people and having faith in the national capabilities we accepted the challenge. The slogan, Pakistan first – had always been a beacon light for us.
i had presented a seven-point agenda I my speech of 17th October, 1999. To achieve this, we focused on revival of economy, alleviation of poverty, good governance and political restructuring. I would touch upon all these issues one by one.
first, about the revival of economy.
Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves which stood at one billion dollars have crossed eight and half billion dollars mark. Looking at these reserves in terms of imports, these are enough for ten months imports as compared to reserves good only four weeks requirements in the past. Insha Allah these foreign exchange reserves will cross the ten billion dollars mark during the current year.
The foreign debts that stood at 38 billion dollars, have been brought down to 36 billion dollars for the first time in Pakistan’s history. That has been reduced by two billion dollars. The debt was increasing as in the past. Our foreign debts would have gone up to 44 to 45 billion dollars. It would not have been reduced to 36 billion dollars. Furthermore we have reduced by four billion dollars the high interest bearing loans which were consuming 63 percent of our budget. Now it stands at 48 percent. This means that now we have more funds left for development projects. The internal debts that were increasing at the rate of sixteen percent annually, have been reduced us for the first time in country’s history.
Due to the measures, as compared to about one hundred billion rupees development expenditure during eight to ten years before 1999, this year we are investing 134 billion rupees on development projects.
During the past three years we have brought this figure to 404 billion rupees raising it from 300 billion rupees, that is, we have increased the tax collection by one hundred billion rupees, the tax collection during previous ten years had increased by one hundred billion and had gone up to 200 to 300 billion rupees which by the grace of Allah had crossed 450 billion rupees during the last three years.
i am glad to announce that this tax collection in the first three months of the year which was anticipated to increase by 13 percent has increased by 17 percent. So I am fully confident that revenue collection is on track and it would cross 450 billion rupees.
Exports in Pakistan’s history never increased beyond nine billion dollars. We crossed this figure during last two years by nine billion dollars. This is a record for Pakistan. Insha Allah this year our plan is to increase the exports beyond ten billion dollars. Looking at the figures of the first three months exports could increase by about twelve percent, but actually they have increased by fifteen percent. Insha alllah our exports would cross the ten billion dollars mark.
these stood at one billion dollars in 1999. The remittances last year rose to 2.1 billion dollars. Insha Allah this year the remittances shall cross three billion dollars. We have already crossed one billion dollars. I am confident that Insha Allah we shall cross the three billion dollars in home remittances.
taking a look at the stock market, the Karachi stock exchange in 1999 had 1,150 units and now it stands at about 2,300 units, showing an increase of more than double.
foreign direct investment.
let me tell you that foreign direct investment too has increased. But unfortunately, it has not increased to the extent that we wanted. In 1999, there was investment of 376 million dollars. In 2002, it was 485. This is not enough. This year Insha Allah it will increase further. In fact the freeze on foreign currency accounts had shattered the confidence of the investors. But due to the policies adopted by our government, there will be increase in investment. The most important thing is that our credit rating which was worst in 1999 has now improved a lot.
now let me refer to development projects.
we are spending 130 billion rupees on these development projects. For the progress of agriculture, we are constructing a number of dams, that is water reservoirs, canals and work has begun on the drainage projects. These include Mangla, Merani dam, Gomal Zam dam, Thal Renee Karachi canal. You must have heard that the Chotiari dam project in Sindh has been completed. I shall be inaugurating the project. For improvement of communications system, many mega projects have been started. These include Karachi-Gwadar coastal highway, M-I, Peshawar-Rawalpindi road, M-3, Pindi Bhattian to Faisalabad road.
Northern byepass, which we call m-10, Lyari expressway, Bunder road, ring road and in northern areas, three roads that would attract tourism. You must have heard all about it. Work is going ahead speedily on all these projects. The work on Gwadar port is in progress at a very fast pace. This should have been completed three years back. Now Insha Allah, the way the work is going on, the project shall be completed within 30 months. In Baluchistan, the Saindak copper project, which had been lying abandoned has been revived, producing jobs to many people. We are also laying down double railway track from Karachi to Peshawar.
the existing track is being repaired. We have received new coaches and engines and Insha Allah within the next one and a half to two years, our trains from Karachi to Peshawar shall run at a speed of one hundred and fifty kilometer per hour.
in the power sector, work on the Thar coal project has started. It was lying abandoned for the last ten years and no one was coming forward to run the project. We have revived the project. This project, Insha Allah Tala will produce gas and electricity. This will not only result in the progress of the region, but will also lead to prosperity of the people in the most backward area.
in the last three years we have increased gas production by thirty percent. The projects that are now under construction Insha Allah will increase the gas production by seventy percent.
you should know that with this there will be a decrease of about seven hundred million dollars, that is forty billion rupees in the oil import bill and this would be import substitution. Parco’s white pipeline, from Karachi to Mahmud Kot which is a mega project, has been started at a cost of 480 million dollars. This will be completed in 20 months time. All these development projects shall be completed within the next three to five years. I want to give you an example of economic progress that will be brought about by these projects. Kachhi canal will be completed at a cost of 450 million dollars, that is about thirty billion rupees.
this will bring thirteen thousand acres of land under cultivation. Since it is cotton growing area, it will produce seven lakh bales of cotton. Converting this into rupees, its value without value addition, the price of phutti (lint cotton) will be between 200 and 250 million dollars from one crop, that is in two years we shall recover the cost of the canal and this will promote economy of the area and bring about a change in the lives of millions of people. Poverty shall be alleviated. You can thus yourselves realize that these will bring about many changes in the lives of the people.
in the information technology sector, access to internet has been increased from 29 to 850 cities. Bandwidth capacity which was 30 megabyte had been increased to 400 megabyte per second. Bandwidth cost was not such that information technology was not making progress. It has come down from ninety thousand dollars per month to only three hundred thousand and eight hundred dollars per month. It is helping the growth of information technology. Countless software parks, institutes, universities and virtual university have been opened and they are now in operation. Special attention has been given to industrial sector. In textile, one billion dollars investment shall be made for setting up new factories and for the up-gradation of machinery.
as a result of government policies, there has been a significant increase in production in the engineering sector. But we need to work still harder for the progress of this sector. Increase in the production in industrial sector will be commensurate with the amount of investment. This is the data I have presented before you in connection with the revival of economy. These facts can be confirmed by any one wishing to do so. I am issuing a detailed white paper about it. Any one who wishes to confirm these facts can see the ground realities. Unfortunately in Pakistan there exists atmosphere of ignorance and falsehood and it sometimes becomes difficult to distinguish between falsehood and truth.
people say that we always talk of macro economics. No we do not talk of micro economics or about the change in the condition of the people or whether there is any improvement in their lives. These people either do not understand anything about micro economics or they want to deceive others. They must understand that macro economics provides the base for economy. If you are to correct the micro economy then you have to set in right the macro economy.
if you want to remove poverty, then first of all you will have to correct the macro economics of the country. That is, the country should earn money and money could be earned if the macro economics is working on correct lines. The money system, the economic system will be corrected after macro economy is set right. This is the starting point. This is the way to take the country forward. If macro economics is not corrected, poverty shall never be eradicated and macro economy can never be corrected. Side by side with the revival of economy, as I said earlier. The other important area is the alleviation of poverty. My dear poor brothers and sisters please listen to me carefully. I want to tell you that I do not belong to a rich family.
no one else feels about your worries as I do. This has to be understood that poverty shall not be removed only with the revival of economy. If the economy improves, poverty shall also be removed. This will never be removed by getting jobs in government offices and corporations. After all how many jobs the government can provide. How many employments it can generate? If we fill up all the government offices and institutions and corporations to serve political gains, even then only one hundred and fifty thousand or two hundred thousand people shall get the jobs. This would result in the collapse of the institutions as had happened in the past. But poverty would still not be removed.
the task is much greater as we have to improve the quality of life of millions of people. Provision of jobs to a few thousands shall not make any change. Our government has studied the ways and means of removing poverty and carried out an analysis. After that a comprehensive plan has been chalked out, about which I want to tell you. Please listen to me carefully. Before I come to the details, it is important to know the answers about two things. Firstly, the question is as to where the poverty lies and where the poverty is rampant. Only then a plan can be drawn. Poverty in my view is at three places. Firstly it is in the rural areas because sixty to seventy percent of our population lives in the rural areas.
the poverty is there. These are the people whose livelihood is dependent on agriculture. We need to bring about improvement there. Secondly, there are educated unemployed in the cities. The poverty is there.
thirdly, in the cities, there are uneducated unemployed. These are the three areas which we have to attack and set right.
second question is what is the real way to remove poverty. This must be pondered upon. In my view, the poverty can be removed through three means. Number one, people should get employment and jobs, so that people should have the source of income.
number 2, there should be increase in the income from the land, where seventy percent of our people are working and are praying for rains. If there is no rain, there is devastation.
their income can be raised through increased income from the land, and number 3, self employment, that is personal business opportunities for the people. They should get money so that they can start their own personal business.
besides these three means, there is no other way in my view to remove poverty. Now I want to take up all these three ways of removing poverty one by one.
what our government has done. The first method as I said before is to increase the number of jobs. I have told you that in government offices and institutions, at the most one hundred thousand jobs can be provided. That is not enough. We have started development plans, dams, canals, roads. They are providing jobs to three point five million people. The people will continue to get jobs.
when these civil works will start, as at the moment only earthwork is in progress, there will be greater increase in job opportunities. Let me tell you, that all the mega projects will be in public sector. These will provide more and more jobs. In the past ten years no development project had been executed. Just look at the m-2 Rawalpindi-Lahore motorway. Is there any other bigger project? You must know that we are paying five billion rupees annually for this project. This is a burden on the national exchequer. Through these development projects there will be three point five million jobs and the Khushal Pakistan project that we are running can provide five hundred thousand jobs.
these programmes should be launched every year. Now let us come to the question of the educated unemployed. They have got thousands of jobs in the information technology. As the information technology sector grows, all the educated people in cities will get more job opportunities. Take only the case of nadra, which is preparing identity cards. It has provided jobs to six thousand boys and girls. I am fully confident that with the passage of time, more jobs will be available. Many new factories have been set up particularly in the textile sector which have increased jobs. As I said earlier, if there is increased investment and more factories are set up, creating more and more jobs, uneducated unemployed labourers will be getting more employment.
the educated unemployed shall get jobs in information technology sector. And those development programmes like khushal Pakistan plan will provide jobs to people in the rural areas. These measures will provide jobs to them.
now let us come to the second means of removing poverty. How should we increase earnings of the people in rural areas where sixty to seventy percent of our people live. There, we have to improve our agriculture. How it can to be brought about. It would be done through provision of water to irrigate uncultivated lands. Another way is the yield intensification so that there is more per acre production. That has to be done by the landlords through their own efforts. But the government’s job is to provide water in the uninhabited barren land so that the life of the people is improved.
for this we have to build water reservoirs, dig out canals. Both the projects should go together. If the reservoirs are to be built, the water is available. But if there is no canal, it would be useless. And if there are canals and no water reservoirs, it too will be useless. So both these projects are interlinked and have to go side by side.
we have started work on Mangla, Merani and Gomal zam dam projects. Chattiary dam, as I said earlier, has been completed.
this you must understand that we need an additional five and a half million acre feet of water in our reservoirs. This is more than the water reservoir in kalabagh dam which can have five point one million acres feet of water.
Katchi, Thal and Reni canal are three important mega canal projects, designed to have more storage of water. Water will be available through these canals and flood water. Through both ways, water will be released in the canals. This will bring two point six million acres of land under cultivation. Through Merani dam, Gomal Zam dam, Chattiary dam, five hundred thousand acres of land will come under cultivation. These projects will help increase the earnings of the people and bring about a change in the lives of four million people.
Gwadar port and coastal highway are the important projects that we are constructing. There is lot of fish in this region and dates are produced in abundant in Turbat and Punjgoor which presently is being used as a fodder for the animals. There are one hundred and thirty varieties of dates in the area, but they are all wasted. Insha Allah with the construction of Gwadar port and coastal highway, this produce will find its way to Karachi and foreign markets. This will increase the income of hundreds of thousands of people in the area. There will be more jobs. About increase in earning through land I have already told you.
now let us come to the third method of eradication of poverty and that is about avenues of personal business. In this connection this we have done. First of all we have introduced a new system of Zakat. Under this we distributed two billion rupees twenty thousand rupees on an average among one hundred thousand deserving people by the end of June last. These are the most poor people. During the current year we are distributing five billion rupees among two hundred and fifty thousand people at an average of twenty thousand rupees. They are starting their personal business with the help of this money.
I have got it verified that in many areas, these people have started their personal business.
Besides this, through khushali bank, loans upto thirty thousand rupees will be given to the poor people.
By this December, Insha Allah this Khushali bank will spread in every district of Pakistan. There will be branches of this bank and within the next three years hundreds of thousands of people could get loans.
ADBP, which used to give loans to the rich people and those who were defaulting. Now directive has been issued not to give loans over and above one million rupees and loans of less than one hundred thousand to get much more importance. This will help people earn their living.
We have distributed one billion rupees among eighteen thousand affectees of cooperative companies’ scam.
Now the nab, the accountability Bureau is after Taj company and other cooperative scam companies.
these were the far reaching plans of our government designed to eradicate poverty. They will start bearing fruit with the passage of time, Insha Allah.
in my view this is the correct way of alleviating poverty.
my poor brothers and sisters !
i appeal to you to have patience. I want to assure you that there may be delay but no injustice. As I have said earlier, our third focus of attention is to improve the system of governance.
corruption has been eradicated from the top government level down below. We are proud that during our government there has been no case of any corruption.
i would say that some thieves no doubt leveled allegations but they themselves are thieves.
they think that everyone is like them. So I ignore their allegations. Billions of rupees of loot and plunder have been saved by eradicated corruption at the top. Transparency international, which is an international institution, in 1999 had termed us as the second last, from the bottom one place above. They have brought us now at 23rd position. This improvement has occurred in the level of corruption.
we have promoted the culture of merit. All the jobs above grade eleven are being filled through public service commission. Promotions are being made on merit through boards. Posts in police are being filled on merit and not through bribe. Presidents and heads of all banks, corporations, public sector institutions are being employed on merit. All the corporations and institutions have been depoliticized.
this has brought improvement in their performance. Now take the railways, it was incurring 2.5 billion rupees of loss every year. Now this has become a profitable institution. In the first quarter, it has earned half a billion rupees profit. It has employed new engineers, got new coaches. Neat and clean trains are running. These trains are running on time. I have feed back about it. Everyone is appreciating it. All the railway stations are clean and have become modern. This was about railway. Now take the case of PIA, it was about to go bankrupt. Now Insha Allah this year it will earn a profit of 2.5 billion rupees. And we are purchasing new planes for PIA.
Take the case of steel mill. It was running in loss. It owed a loan of 19 billion rupees and this loan was increasing. In these three years, we repaid five billion rupees worth of loans. Now it is running in profit.
Now about WAPDA. It was a sinking organization. It has been reformed to a great extent. I know people used to criticize its performance and still are saying so. But I want to tell you that they have worked very hard to improve it. Let me throw some light on their performance. First of all about IPPS, that is independent power producers. These are private companies which produce electricity. All disputes with them have been resolved. This has helped save six billion dollars or 360 billion rupees. These 360 billion rupees over the life of projects. Their annual income had been to the tune of 93 billion rupees which went up to 18 billion rupees. If these had not been closed, then these IPPS this year would have been paid 109 billion rupees by WAPDA. Where from they could find such a huge sum? Let me tell you that last year WAPDA paid 84 billion rupees to the IPPS and next year you must know that WAPDA would have to pay 115 billion rupees to the IPPS whether or not you use the electricity provided by them. By 2004, there will be some decrease in this count. These deals which the previous government had entered into with the IPPS are front/loaded deals. You must know such a colossal amount is being paid to them.
After conclusion of re-deal by WAPDA with these companies, there has been a saving of 360 billion of rupees. As for new electricity connections, during the past fifty years ten million connections were provided. But in these last thee years 2.7 million connections have been provided. All the unfinished projects left by the previous governments will Insha Allah be completed by next June. 1400 towns will be provided electricity. And you must know that WAPDA has entered into an agreement with Iran under which in the areas bordering Iran and in coastal areas, that is Turbat, Punjgoor, Gwadar and Pasni, electricity shall be available by the end of December this year. This will cost three cent per unit and will be very cheap. This is a very good arrangement. This good agreement has been entered into by WAPDA with Iran. This was about the performance of WAPDA.
When we criticize others, we must also appreciate the good work done by them. After WAPDA I must tell you that all lot and plunder in all the banks has been eradicated and other public sector institutions are running in a better way. I will not take your time by telling you about these agreements. This was the performance of the government institutions and departments which has improved during the tenure of this government. These are known facts which everyone can see.
About the education sector. We have made a complete appraisal about it and have done planning in four areas. This related to literacy campaign, primary and secondary education, higher education and madressa education. At primary education level, we have introduced new syllabus, new curriculum and new books have been published, which are being introduced in the schools. After that in rural areas and the urban areas, there will be similar syllabus. Special attention has been paid to training of teachers. Hundreds of thousands of teachers have completed training.
System of examinations has been changed. This is a new experiment which is successfully running. In government schools we have introduced evening shifts which we have privatized. Through this measure new 6000 schools have been opened in the private sector especially for girls. For teachers training, we have made such policies which will have far reaching effect. By winding up the university grants commission, a higher teachers education commission has been set up. It will work under Professor Ata-ur-Rahman, Insha Allah.
a new university ordinance has been enforced. I know there have been strikes in many universities against this ordinance. I want to point out that the teachers and the students are brothers. You must know that our universities are in a very bad shape. There is no doubt about it. Do you have any doubt about it? If we want to bring about improvement then new planning is must. If we have to develop the education sector, we will need new planning otherwise we not change and the country will never be able to make progress. I am glad that professor Ata-ur-Rahman has talked to the vice chancellors and the students and they have almost reached a settlement. I appeal to you that in the best interest of the country and the interest of the universities, let this ordinance function. It is the question of the future of Pakistan. The future of country ! Let this move forward.
In the field of science and technology, we plan to institute linkage between the industry and the university. The universities should impart education in subjects which relate to the industry. There should be increase in exports and import substitution as well. In this field we have greatly increased the budgetary provisions for pioneer education. In 1999, the budget of the ministry of science and technology was only 140 million rupees, that is point two billion rupees. This year we have raised their budget to 6.74 billion rupees.
In science subjects, there were only 60 PhDs coming out of the university annually. Now by the grace of Allahtala, a programme to produce 400 PhDs has been launched. Funds have been provided for this purpose and people are getting enrolled and getting education. After three to four years Insha Allah universities will be turning out every year 400 PhDs in science subjects every year.
Their number will gradually increase according to our plan and within the next five years more than 1,000 phds will be produced in Pakistan every year.
Let me tell you that side by side our attention has remained focused on primary and secondary health sectors, that is to provide health facilities to the people in rural areas. There is improvement and this continued gradually.
In law and order, far reaching and revolutionary changes have been brought about. 140 years old obsolete police act has been replaced by police ordinance 2002. Entry into police service has been made through merit and this is the criteria. Posts above ASI are being filled through public service commission and those of constables through a board. The posts are being filled on the pattern of army’s ISSB system and far better people are coming forward. Police responsibilities have been re-allocated. That is, their responsibility of prosecution has now been handed over to the provincial prosecution service, which is being introduced.
Investigation of cases will now be the responsibility of a separate police, that is, watch and ward work will be separate and investigation, that is investigation police will be assigned to others. Investigation has been separated from prosecution.
Three and a half billion rupees have been provided for providing transport and communication facilities and accommodation to the police.
These facilities were earlier never provided. In Islamabad and in the provinces forensic labs that is modern investigation labs are being set up.
Anti terrorist institutions are being set up at the centre and in the provinces. They have carried out very successful operations and have eliminated most notorious gangs and individuals and arrested a number of them. The most important in the police reforms is that the police is now answerable to the peoples representatives.
As for the accountability, the national accountability bureau has been set up. Its work is satisfactory and I know there is criticism about them. Results are not hundred percent. But whatever work they have done, I want to tell you it has never been done in the history of Pakistan.
Overall, they have regularized an amount of 160 billion rupees. All their actions have been across the board and non discriminatory and it started from the top. They apprehended people nobody could touch in the past. They took action against 532 government servants, 180 politicians, 150 businessmen and 18 military personnel.
Talking on overall view, they have created a feeling of fear of god among the influential people. This was their performance, which is satisfactory. It can be better for which they should do more efforts.
Our government followed a successful foreign policy during the most critical juncture. Alhamdo lillah Pakistan’s prestige has increased. We have good relations with all the countries. These include china, gulf countries, turkey, SAARC member states, the us, European union countries, Japan, south east Asia, central Asian republics, Islamic countries. With all of these countries our relations are good.
as for relations with India, we always kept aloft Pakistan’s sovereignty and honour. We did not accept any pressure. We promoted the Kashmir cause I the world. I personally raised voice for the supremacy of Islam in all the international for a.
I raised my voice against linking Islam with terrorism at the united nations. I experienced about the utility of madressas every where. I mentioned about the excesses perpetrated against Muslims by the Hindus at the floor of the united nations. This was our performance in foreign policy.
Besides this, the government allowed freedom to the media. There is no precedence that media ever enjoyed such freedom in Pakistan’s history.
We introduced the culture of free debates expression of views without any fear. This was the demand of a democratic society. Many false things have been written and said about me and my government. I felt very angry, but I can say with great pride that we did not stop or touch them. We legislated on the opening of private tv and radio channels. Dozens of applications have been received. I must say about the media that the use of freedom should be with responsibility and national interest and honour, must always be kept in view, which sometimes is ignored. I feel very sad that some responsible people have become media managers of political elements.
Now in conclusion, let me mention the political reforms. There was never true democracy in Pakistan and political governments never came to the expectations of the people. To say that they were not allowed time is totally wrong. As I said earlier over the past twelve years before 1999, every government had about two and a half to three years time. This is the time span that our government got. For this there was a dire need for political reforms. The first question arises as to why democracy failed in Pakistan. In my view there are two reasons.
There was no effective institution to check and oversee government’s corruption and incompetence. Secondly, no power was given to the people at the lower level to resolve their problems. People were never given any power. We started the political reforms from the local level. Local governments came into being as a result of silent revolution in august 2001. Let me tell you about their real effectiveness and value.
The people have been empowered in financial and administrative matters. Government officials have been placed under the peoples representatives. So much so the police too will be answerable to the peoples representatives. Women, minorities, labourers, farmers have been given special representation. It is the duty of all of us to ensure the working of the local governments so that the peoples problems are solved at the local level.
Besides this, we have introduced far reaching constitutional amendments so that there is check on all the top echelons of power and there is continuity of democracy and reforms.
In the end, I fulfilled my commitment by holding the elections in October in accordance with the verdict of the supreme court. These elections were totally impartial and transparent. There were some allegations but I consider them baseless.
This is because it has become a fashion in Pakistan for the losing candidates to make allegations.
May Allahtala guide all of them on the right path and take them out of the difficulties and devote attention on policies to serve the country and the people.
My brother and sisters, within the next one or two days I would be fulfilling my promise and hand over the responsibilities of government to the new prime minister.
I have placed before you honestly the performance of my government. As I have stated I also am issuing a white paper about it. I assure you that whatever I have done, it was for the betterment of Pakistan and its people. Every step that I took was guided by the spirit of honesty, sincerity and patriotism. There can be mistakes. But the intention has always been good. The country is still faced with countless problems. Most of them are self created. Their solution may be difficult, but not impossible. Pakistan has the resources and the people have the potential. Pakistan first, should be our spirit and our motto. Our government has shown the right path and corrected the direction of the country. The ship of the nation has been steered clear out of the stormy seas and is well set on its destination. Now it is the duty of the elected government to get the country its due place.
A place that had been envisioned by our forefathers – a place which is the aspiration of the people from the very first day. A status which is due to us because of our national potential. The new government should take up the reigns of power with full resolve. The ray of hope which we have shown should be spread across the length and breadth of the country. The due role that I have, I shall always continue to play for the protection and progress of Pakistan.
My brothers and sisters.
We need to be patient. The nation has tremendous potential to progress and move forward.
Pakistan zindabad and paindabad.