Those who are talking about technocrat set-up were perhaps living in a fools paradise as they do not know the PPP, the President said addressing a mid-term review of the government.
Water cannot flow over us and we know how to defend our democratic position that we have earned through a long struggle and invaluable sacrifices, sources privy to the meeting said quoting the President as addressing it. They said that the President counted achievements of his partys government terming them without parallel and remarkable. He talked about achievements in last two and a half years from NFC to market access in Europe. There is no room for any undemocratic venture against the PPP government. No one could dare dislodge the PPP government. Therefore you should not pay any heed to the rumours in the air and get back to your assignments having no fear of anyone or anything to complete your term, the President told the ministers who earlier feared a cabinet cut if not any other drastic measure by the PPP leadership.
According to the sources, the PPP has decided to postpone an intended cabinet cut and reshuffle not only for the sake of austerity but also for political adjustments till December this year at least.
Later, an official handout stated that a mid-term review of the government held in a meeting of the Federal Cabinet presided over by President Asif Ali Zardari and PM Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani at the Aiwan-e-Sadr Friday. It reviewed in-depth progress by the government, the challenges faced by it and the way forward and resolved to continue making strides to strengthen democracy and address the problems faced by the people.
Some 40 Federal Ministers, Ministers of State and Advisers were present in the meeting as they were summoned with at least a couple of reminders since Thursday. According to presidential Spokesman Farhatullah Babar the meeting also adopted a resolution reposing full confidence in the leadership of the PPP Co-Chairman President Zardari and PM Gilani.
The issues discussed in the meeting that lasted for four hours ranged from the current political situation to the state of economy; from rehabilitation of flood victims to the relations with coalition partners and from the opportunities before the government to the challenges faced by it.
According to the spokesman, the President addressed twice at the opening and at the end while the PM spoke towards the end of the meeting. The meeting noted that despite challenges and hurdles in its way the Government had waded through difficulties successfully and achieved significant achievements on political and economic fronts as well as on the fronts of fight against militancy.
It also resolved that democracy the Parliament and the unanimous Constitutional Amendments adopted by the Parliament in April last would be defended and protected at all costs.
He described that Thursdays development of European Union leaders agreeing to grant limited trade concessions to Pakistan to help it overcome the impact of devastating floods as very positive. He believed that it has raised the confidence level of Pakistan to achieve the objective of market access.
The President said the international community had realised that a stable, democratic and prosperous Pakistan was key to address global issues such as counter-terrorism, non-proliferation and counter-narcotics etc.
About strengthening the partys organisational structure, the President in his concluding remarks said that as co-chairman of the party he would take appropriate decisions in consultation with the party on the organisational matters. He said that beginning with Balochistan, where the party organisation was in suspension, all organisational issues of the party would be addressed shortly.