ISLAMABAD, (TNS): PM vows not to resign

 
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ISLAMABAD, July 13 (TNS): Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has rejected demand of the opposition and categorically said he will not resign from his office.

He announced on Thursday while chairing a meeting of the Federal Cabinet here at the PM Office, which received a loud applause from his Cabinet colleagues who thumped desk on the announcement of the Prime Minister not to tender his resignation.” The Joint Investigation Team has submitted a report full of accusations and conjectures. Our family has gained nothing from the politics, rather it has lost a lot,” he said.

He asked his colleagues; should he resign on the demand of anti-democracy forces. “I have no burden on my conscience, by the grace of God,” he remarked.

Opposition has been seeking resignation of the Prime Minister following submission of a report at the end of a 60-day probe into accusations of money laundering and concealment of wealth, on the orders of the Supreme Court of Pakistan.

The Prime Minister said the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz got an overall lead in votes over those who were seeking his resignation. He said his government was in the process of setting up mega projects worth billions of rupees where no corruption has been proved.

He said his government has accomplished in four years which could not be done in past two decades. “We will not let an era of darkness return to our industries and villages,” he added.

The Prime Minister said he was not involved in corruption of even a penny in past 32 years, since 1985. The JIT did not even question him about any such corruption. “All these secrets would see the light of the day on appropriate time,” he said and added that time was not far. “We will not let the pace of progress and developments derail,” the Prime Minister vowed.

He said Pakistan has paid a heavy price for such antics in the past and now this trend should end.

The meeting approved a broad-based agenda including cooperation with other countries in air services, climate change, defense and financial intelligence:

AIR SERVICES:

The cabinet approved accords for starting of negotiations on air services with aviation of other countries including Azerbaijan, Serbia, Vietnam and Brazil.

COMMERCE:

The meeting gave ex-post facto approval to start negotiations and approval for signing of Memorandum of Understanding between the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) and the respective departments of Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Azerbaijan.

CLIMATE CHANGE:

The cabinet gave a nod to Doha Amendment to the Kyoto Protocol (KP) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), The meeting also approved MoU signing on cooperation in disaster management with Kazakhstan through National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and Ministry of Climate Change.

DEFENSE:

Approval was given to cooperation in defense and technical training with the countries including Indonesia, Turkey, Thailand and Poland.

ECONOMIC AFFAIRS and TOURISM:

The meeting ratified inter-governmental agreement on CAREC Institute, Economic Affairs and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Cuba in the field of tourism and economic affairs.

EDUCATION:

The cabinet approved signing of agreement on cooperation in higher education and professional training with Turkey. Ex-post facto approval was given to Agreement between Russian State University for the Humanities, Moscow and National University of Modern Language (NUML), Islamabad.

FINANCE:

Approval was given to ratification of MoU between Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) of Pakistan and Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Turkmenistan Concerning Cooperation in exchange of financial intelligence related to money laundering and terrorist financing. The meeting also approved signing of MoU between State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and Central Bank of the Russian Federation (CBRF) on bilateral cooperation.

FOREIGN AFFAIRS:

The cabinet approved to commence negotiations on MoUs on bilateral consultations with Foreign Affairs Ministries of other countries including South Africa, Nigeria, Niger, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Senegal, Kenya and Romania.

AGRICULTURE:

The meeting approved cooperation in the field of agriculture and food security with Uzbekistan and Uganda.

PETROLEUM:

The meeting approved to start negotiations with the Government of Kuwait for signing a MoU for petroleum exploration in Pakistan.

AVOIDANCE OF DOUBLE TAXATION:

The cabinet approved to amend the existing convention for the avoidance of double taxation and prevention of fiscal evasion of taxes on income with several countries including Turkmenistan, Serbia, the United Kingdom, Mauritius, Tajikistan, Thailand, Sweden, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Africa, Kuwait, Yemen, Japan, Bangladesh, Oman, Ukraine, Iran, Vietnam and Sudan.

MoUs WITH MALDIVES:

The meeting gave ex-post facto approval to start negotiations and approval for signing of MoU to develop relations in tourism between Pakistan and Maldives. Approval was also given to start negotiations on draft MoU for opening of Defence Credit Line of US$10 million for Maldives. Another approval was given for signing of MoU by Civil Service Commission of Maldives with National School of Public Policy, Pakistan. The Cabinet approved commencement of negotiation of MoU between the Foreign Services Academy (FSA) of Pakistan and the Foreign Service Institute (FOSIM) of Maldives.

APPOINTMENT:

The Cabinet approved appointment of Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL), Petroleum and Natural Resources, besides approval of terms and conditions of appointment of members of Gas and Oil, of the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA).

RATIFICATION OF DECISIONS:

The meeting also ratified decisions taken by the Cabinet Committee on Energy in its meetings on 29-05-2017, 30-05-2017, besides those taken on 06-06-2017 and 30-05-2017. The Cabinet also ratified decisions taken by the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet, in its meeting held on 07-06-2017. The Cabinet ratified the decisions taken by the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet, in its meeting held on 17-06-2017.

The federal cabinet also gave approval of the Committee to propose name of the new Islamabad International Airport. The Committee would comprise Minister for Ports and Shipping Mir Hasil Khan Bazenjo, Adviser on National History and Literary Heritage Irfan Siddique, Minister for Information Maryam Aurangzeb and Barrister Zafarullah, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Law.

The new Islamabad international airport, in the outskirts of Islamabad is in final stages of completion and expected to be inaugurated in August. The first greenfield airport would be able to handle the largest A380 aircraft and would be linked to the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad through a Metro road link. It would be able to tackle 4500 passengers simultaneously, and have 15 aircraft parking bays.