January 5, 2024
ISLAMABAD – PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari on Thursday said the country could no longer afford politics of “business as usual” and it was time for a “new dawn” for Pakistan.
He made the remarks on social media platform x after addressing a rally in Lahore’s Jati Umra. In the post, Bilawal thanked his supporters for braving the cold to see him.
“Pakistan can no longer afford the politics of ‘business as usual’, where it is always the poor who are asked to sacrifice, whilst the privileged few reap the benefits,” Bilawal said.
“We can no longer afford the politics of division and hatred that continues to divide us. We can no longer afford the politics of convenience, where the will of the people is suppressed by backroom deals that empower whoever is the new ‘flavour of the month’.
“You will not stand for it. I will not stand for it. The people of Pakistan will not stand for it. And all power must flow from the people. Together we can usher in a new dawn, and build a Pakistan that works for everyone,” the former foreign minister and the PPP’s prime ministerial candidate said.
Addressing the rally in Lahore, he said the PPP would put up a strong fight against its political opponents from NA-125, which has been won by the PML-N in the past.
He said the PPP would give a message to all “political forces” that the party was contesting from every constituency of the country to form the next government.
Calling on PPP workers to work day and night, he said the PPP did not believe in politics of mudslinging and would take its manifesto and vision to the masses of Punjab.
“You have to convince the people of Raiwind and Punjab that if you want a government of the common folk, the poor and the farmers […] then only this party of martyrs can accomplish that and represent the people instead of the PML-N and PTI,” he said.
Bilawal added that “the PPP will fulfil its promise if it hopefully gets its chance”. The PPP chairman also laid out and explained the party’s 10-point manifesto to the crowd.
At one point, he talked about free healthcare and said it was not an “empty promise like the PML-N or PTI” as he highlighted the PPP performance in this regard in Sindh.
“What do they (PML-N) talk about? That they have done this and that in Punjab? You tell me, have they given any free government hospital to you in Raiwind? They themselves flee to London whenever they have chest pain.
“I said then too that you don’t need to go so far, we have made the NICVD in Karachi. But if you didn’t want to avail NICVD then don’t worry because the PPP will form the next government and next time [there will be] free treatment for you in Raiwind,” he said, in an apparent swipe at PML-N’s Nawaz Sharif.
“Next time when there is chest pain — and it will definitely happen on February 8 — then we are making a free hospital here for you,” he quipped.