ANI Photo | Pakistan: Political experts call PML-N-led government’s performance “abysmal”

Political experts believe that the removal of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government in the penultimate year of its five-year tenure was an unwise move, The Express Tribune reported.
They said that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) led coalition government’s first year in office was a complete disaster.
Several among the political intelligentsia rated the performance of the PML-N-led collation government as “abysmal” as all its promises before taking the office fell flat on its face, as per the news report. In April last year, the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), including PML-N, removed the Imran Khan-led PTI government through a no-confidence motion.
In April last year, Shehbaz Sharif was sworn in as the Pakistan Prime Minister. Meanwhile, Former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan launched an aggressive campaign against the government. According to experts, the Shehbaz Sharif-led government has survived Imran Khan’s onslaught and has been able to so far prevent Pakistan from defaulting on its debt payments amid political, economic, and judicial impasse is nothing short of an “achievement” in itself.
The PML-N-led coalition government had come to power on the promise of ending economic instability and containing inflation. However, the Shehbaz Sharif-led government’s promises fell flat amid political, economic, and legal challenges, as per the news report.

Political expert Zaigham Khan said, “In my opinion, a year of PDM in office has been a complete disaster.” Khan further said, “Not only the ruling coalition failed at the economic front, but things also slipped out of their hands politically, as they have become “very unpopular” at the end of their first year,” according to The Express Tribune report.
The PDM, which was the opposition alliance last year frequently slammed the PTI-led coalition government, particularly over inflation. However, the inflation under the PDM government topped 35.4 per cent in March. Zaigham Khan noted that Pakistan was in a “serious economic crisis” when the PML-N-led coalition government took over as the 7th and 8th review of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme was stalled.
He further said that the PDM government did their bid in the first few months and the IMF programme was put on rails again. However, the development had a political cost for the PDM, especially for the PML-N as was clear from different by-elections, as per the news report.
Zaigham said, “That’s where they went wrong as they brought Ishaq Dar back and made him the finance minister,” according to The Express Tribune report. He said that the IMF programme soon derailed and Pakistan’s financial situation deteriorated. In addition to economic turmoil, the Pakistan government became “very unpopular” as they could not manage the situation politically.
He noted that Pakistan’s situation has deteriorated while the bureaucracy failed to help manage governance and their delivery was hugely impacted. Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, the Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (PILDAT) president, said, “The decision to remove Imran Khan through a vote of no confidence just 16 months before the expiry of his term was an unwise one.”
Ahmed Bilal Mehboob said that the rise in Imran Khan’s support after he was removed from power was anticipated as had been the case with all those removed artificially and prematurely in the past, including late Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif, as per the news report. The expert stressed that Pakistan has so far averted the default.
Ahmed Bilal Mehboob said, “The government has also withstood an aggressive onslaught of Imran Khan and his very effective communication strategy.” He added that the PDM government’s communication had been “extremely weak and ineffective.” The expert expressed fear that it appeared that the worst was not yet over and Pakistan might face tougher times ahead. (ANI)

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