Yousaf Raza Gillani renews call for Punjab finance commission

BAHAWALPUR / FAISALABAD: “Had power been devolved to provinces, Bangladesh would not have separated from Pakistan,” said former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gillani on Sunday. He was addressing newsmen at the house of Nawazish Pirzada after a divisional workers convention in Bahawalpur.
Gillani said political crisis in the country would not be resolved until the economy was stabilised.
He said the government should announce a provincial finance commission to determine the development finance share of south Punjab.
“If the government is serious about restoration of Bahawalpur province, the Pakistan Peoples Party will support them,” he said.
He said elections without electoral reforms and a chief election commissioner were impossible. Gillani said the PPP would hold its workers convention on November 30.
He said party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto would address workers on the founding day of the party. Gillani said Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan should focus on electoral reforms instead of staging sit-ins and protests. He said Kala Bagh Dam should be constructed with consultation from all stakeholders.
He said the PPP was the only political party where workers were elected to the parliament. “Some workers ask me why we are supporting the PML-N,” he said. “I tell them that the party supports democracy and respects the Constitution.”
He said Pakistan Peoples Party had watched over the birth of the Constitution.
“The PPP will always protect its legacy,” he said.
PPP workers protest against government
PPP workers staged a protest demonstration on Sunday against the government for failing to control the price hike, lawlessness, unemployment, poverty and load shedding of gas and electricity.
They marched from the house of former minister Raja Riaz Ahmad to the press club.
They were carrying placards and chanted slogans against the government. The protest was led by Ahmad, former MPAs Noorun Nisa, Malik Asghar Ali Qaisar, PPP central committee member Nayyar Hasan Dar and PPP Faisalabad president Rana Mushtaq Ahmad.
Talking to the protesters, Ahmad said the government had failed to deliver its election promises.
He said prices had gone up over a short period and law and order had deteriorated.
“Load shedding hours for gas and electricity have increased and the burdens of the common man have increased,” he said.
“When will the people of Pakistan get the relief they were promised?” he added.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 24th, 2014.

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