A Brave New Pakistan Under Construction

May 12th, 2013 | By | Category: Latest, Pakistan

Naya PakistanThe election results have without doubt been the most decisive in Pakistan’s tortuous path towards political maturity. While it may be considered a setback for those seeking change, it was indeed a heavy price paid by the governing PPP ruled by the Bhutto dynasty. Their mismanagement of Pakistan ranged from the devastating floods to the rising cost of living; consequently pushing millions more into poverty. They managed to worsen Pakistan’s image, as foreign aid became the staple of corrupt officials holding onto power. Few can forget their endorsement of Drone attacks, which has claimed thousands of innocent lives thereby etched in the memories of the Pakistani electorate. The results have almost ravaged the People’s Party (PPP) which may have confirmed a permanent residence for father and son Zardari and Bilawal in the UAE and London. This outcome is major progress for Pakistan’s development when looking ahead. However, one shouldn’t disregard their historical comebacks even if their most recent success occurred on a wave of sympathy. Their political strategists will have the luxury of time to plan a return to front line politics.

The popularity of PTI in Peshawar and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region has sent the most powerful message to the new government of Nawaz Sharif and any potential coalition partners concerning the terror of drone attacks. The people of this region perhaps couldn’t have been compensated with a more energised and vocal representative than Imran Khan which will ensure continued coverage of this volatile north-west region of Pakistan on a national and international level.

Another major force of continued scrutiny and exposure of the next administration is the invigorated and diverse media outputs, which largely filled the vacuum of any viable opposition over the last five years.

The remarkable achievement of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) can be better realised once we begin to appreciate the decades-old siege of two political superpowers, the Sharifs and the Bhuttos, with an estimated combined wealth of approximately $3.2 billion between them. PTI’s success in KPK provides a new front for Pakistani politics which was traditionally fought between Punjab and Sindh. They have introduced meritocracy, free from bonded loyalty, and led by their charismatic leader. We only need to compare them with the likes of UKIP here in England, who are yet to gain a parliamentary seat despite the accolades they were given by the British press as a serious threat to the Conservative Party. Even if we take the example of Liberal Democrats languishing as the third party for many years and often the butt of many jokes about their relevance, many pundits still predict their annihilation at the next general election in 2015 despite their coalition government status. PTI can therefore celebrate its position as the official opposition and fulfil the important role of providing the checks and balances needed for any civilised country claiming to uphold the basic tenets of a democratic state.

Nawaz Sharif can still turn this around if he can improve the economy and subsequently raise living standards as well as resolving the Afghan/Pakistan issue. Many will not criticise his confrontations with India during his previous premierships and many still praise him for testing the Nuclear bomb despite international pressure to hold back, which served as a counterforce to India’s nuclear threat. The Pakistani people are extremely resilient and forgiving despite having been let down in the past. If this is not the case, then Imran Khan’s PTI could make serious inroads over the next five years. In many ways this is a brave naya (new) Pakistan.

Naveed

About the author

Naveed is a medical doctor based in the UK, currently working in the NHS. He has an interest in social and political affairs and a passion for travel.

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