Nawaz’s ouster not a threat to democracy: Bilawal

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Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said on Sunday that the removal of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif did not pose a threat to parliament or democracy.

He was speaking after the inauguration of the National Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases (NICVD) in Larkana.

“The judgement of the Supreme Court of Pakistan to disqualify Nawaz Sharif must be fully implemented. We must strive to address the ailment itself and not the symptoms. The PPP believes that accountability must be impartial and exhaustive. To do so, we need to introduce legislation for across the board accountability,” Bilawal said.

“It is time for us to put Pakistan first and ourselves later. However, Nawaz Sharif does not share this sentiment,” he said.

He said that the people of Larkana had given great sacrifices for the sake of democracy. “Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto took important steps, including opening of Chandka Medical College, to develop the area. Similarly, Benazir Bhutto launched the lady health workers’ programme for the health of the rural population,” he said.

The PPP chief congratulated the team at the NICVD and hoped that the people of Larkana would benefit from the facility, saying Larkana was close to his heart.

“I challenge other chief ministers of Pakistan to show such free-of-cost and state-of-the-art facilities for everyone in their provinces,” said Bilawal.

“We need to focus on infrastructure. Our true purpose must be human resource development. To this end, we have invested our efforts towards providing healthcare through various endeavors, including, but not limited to upgradation of hospitals and trauma centres, establishment of cardiac center and hospitals for women and children,” he said. He emphasised that a healthy nation was a happy nation. “It is heartening that the NICD team and provincial government are working towards this direction,” he said.

“It is my dream to serve the people of Pakistan irrespective of caste, creed, colour and financial standing. In this country, every individual should have access to state-of-the-art medical care so that no one life is lost because they cannot afford healthcare,” he said.

He appreciated the Sindh government for providing quality and affordable healthcare to the people of province.

He said the PPP government was working to fulfill the vision of Shaheed Zulifqar Ali Bhutto and Shaheed Benazir Bhutto.

Bilawal said that he had been informed that angioplasty facility was being provided to the patients free-of-cost at the centre. “It is a matter of great pride that the NICVD has transformed itself in the last two and half years. Today, it operates as the largest centre for heart ailments and angioplasty,” he said.

“The Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto Trauma Centre in Karachi, Gambat Institute of Medical Sciences and new ambulance services are a few examples of the government’s efforts to improve the healthcare system in the province,” he said.

“We can cultivate an egalitarian society based on the principles of parity, equitable justice, tolerance, acceptance, service and sacrifice. I once again want to say bravo to the government of Sindh especially to chief minister for this magnificent effort,” he said. He said that the annual budget of NICVD had been increased from Rs 4 billion to Rs 5.8 billion. He said such centres would also be established in Sukkur, Tando Muhammad Khan next year and further extended to Mirpurkhas, Khairpur, and Nawabshah.