Imran Khan calls for ‘out of the box’ reforms

Khan promised his audience that his administration would protect civil servants from such external pressures and set up a merit-based system. (Photo courtesy: Imran Khan/Facebook)
Updated 14 September 2018
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Imran Khan calls for ‘out of the box’ reforms

  • The prime minister says that Pakistan’s civil bureaucracy, once the pride of the nation, suffers now from “degeneration”
  • Khan said that overseas Pakistanis had “a lot of money,” though they did not want to invest it in their country of origin since they lacked faith in its governance system

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan emphasized the need to improve the governance structure of the country while addressing a group of civil servants in Islamabad on Friday.
He said that Pakistan’s civil bureaucracy was once the pride of the nation, though it suffered “degeneration” due to political interference.
He also promised his audience that his administration would protect civil servants from such external pressures and set up a merit-based system.
“I am not concerned about your political affiliation,” he noted. “I only expect you to perform your duties diligently.”
Khan recognized that Pakistan was facing significant economic challenges, though he described the situation as an opportunity to come up with “out-of-the-box” policy reforms.
However, he noted that his administration would not be able to accomplish much if the country’s civil bureaucracy did not properly implement its policies.
The prime minister said that corruption had destroyed the country, claiming that previous administrations had ruined state institutions to siphon off money and fill their coffers.
Admitting that the government was facing huge financial predicaments, he said that overseas Pakistanis had “a lot of money,” though they did not want to invest it in their country of origin since they lacked faith in its governance system.
He said that Pakistan could become a rich country within a brief span of two years and break out of the debt trap if it managed to address its governance problems.
At present, Khan noted, Pakistan’s debt stood at Rs30 trillion ($241 billion). He also noted that it was important to deal with rampant corruption and move toward a robust process of accountability in the country.


Pakistan’s Senate chairman postpones UAE trip over Indian PM’s visit

Updated 26 min 50 sec ago
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Pakistan’s Senate chairman postpones UAE trip over Indian PM’s visit

  • Premier Modi was honored with the emirates’ highest civilian award on Saturday
  • Pakistan and UAE enjoy close bilateral ties, around 1.6 million Pakistani expatriates in the UAE

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Senate chairman Sadiq Sanjrani postponed a trip to the UAE following Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Abu Dhabi earlier this week, his office said in a statement on Saturday night.
Sanjrani was scheduled to travel to the emirates from August 25 to 28, but hours after PM Modi was honored with the “Order of Zayed” – the UAE’s highest civilian award – He announced his decision to cancel the visit.
“Pakistan strongly supports the freedom movement of Kashmiri people, while the Modi government is subjecting Kashmiri Muslims to extreme oppression and a curfew is imposed (in Indian administered Kashmir),” excerpts from the statement read.
“Under the given circumstances, a visit to the UAE would hurt the sentiments of Kashmiri mothers, sisters and old people. So the chairman canceled the visit of a parliamentary delegation,” it added.
On August 5, PM Modi’s government revoked Article 370 of the Indian constitution which accorded a special status to India-administered Kashmir.
The move generated widespread anger in Pakistan and Azad Kashmir.
Pakistan and the UAE enjoy close bilateral ties, with the UAE Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan visiting Islamabad in January this year, following two visits by Prime Minister Imran Khan to the UAE last year to seek economic assistance. In December, the UAE announced a $3 billion financial support package for Pakistan.
According to the Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis, around 1.6 million expatriates live and work in the UAE and remit more than $4.5 billion to the country every year.