Islamabad: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has admitted making mistakes in the selection of certain cabinet members in the past and says he often thinks he could have avoided these by using discretion and judgment.
Khan made these remarks at the unveiling of the development package for Gilgit Baltistan (GB).
This is the first time that Khan has publicly shown his disapproval of some of his cabinet members though without naming any particular minister.
“Today, when I look back and re-evaluate the performance of some of the ministers and the members of the parliament, I cannot help thinking I should not have given party ticket to them or I could have chosen someone else for a certain portfolio instead of the current minister serving on it,” further said the prime minister.
However, the prime minister having reviewed his own government’s performance fell hard on the opposition saying the previous rulers showed blatant disregard towards public money.
“It is unfortunate that the two parties which came to power turn by turn in the past winning the public confidence and popular support did no service to the country or the people. Once they were in power, they forgot the promises made to the people and instead of improving people’s lives or making some change in their living conditions, they focused on improving their own lives by plundering the national wealth”, lamented Khan.
“A society that lacks in rule of law never prospers,” said the prime minister adding “those involved in petty financial crimes inflict loss to individuals but the big ‘looters’ cause damage to the fabric of society and inflict loss on the whole country through money laundering, kickbacks and corrupt practices, which consequently results in inflation and poverty."
About Pakistan’s anti-graft watchdog, National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Khan said the NAB was catching ‘big fish’ for the first time.
NAB had been around for the past 20 years, but never in the past, it initiated operations against the powerful as it is doing in my government, said Khan adding, “Whenever we win, we will bring the powerful under the law,” he said.
“Pakistan can revive its past glory of a progressing and prosperous country it was 50 years ago only when we hold the powerful accountable to law”, he said.
The prime minister said the country was facing a corrupt mafia but he was trained to face, counter and defeat them.