Urges all stakeholders to mobilise people, businesses, civil society to assist civil, military admins in rescue, relief efforts.

ISLAMABAD    -   President Dr Arif Alvi has said that though he, as the President, did not have a constitutional obligation to play a role to defuse the current political polarisa­tion, yet with consent of all stakeholders, he will volun­teer in his personal capac­ity to mediate among stake­holders on major questions faced by the country, in­cluding the date of next elections, consensus-based economic charter, and the way forward on making key appointments. 

The President expressed these remarks during a meeting with senior media persons, who called on him, at Aiwan-e-Sadr, on Friday.

Replying to another ques­tion, the President said that all institutions, including judiciary and army, should not be used for political point-scoring, as such com­ments were not in the greater national interest. 

The President called upon all governments and political parties to pause politics and urged all stake­holders to launch a nation­wide drive to mobilize peo­ple of Pakistan, businesses, civil society and humanitar­ian organizations to assist civil and military adminis­trations in their rescue and relief efforts to rehabilitate the flood victims and for the reconstruction of damaged infrastructure.

Mujeeb-ur-Rehman Shami, Suhail Warraich, Gauhar Za­hid Malik, Awais Rauf and Nawab Kaifee attended the meeting. Talking about his visit to flood-hit areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Southern Punjab, and the low-lying areas of Sindh and Balochistan, the President said that this unprecedent­ed catastrophe had been in­duced due to global warm­ing and climate change whereas Pakistan contribut­ed less than 1% to the global carbon emissions. 

He further said that the developed world, being the major contributor to global warming and climate change, should proportion­ally bear the burden of res­cue and relief operations, reconstruction of damaged communication infrastruc­ture, rebuilding the de­stroyed houses and com­pensating the people for lost property, livestock and standing crops.

The President highlighted that the climate catastro­phe had affected more than 33 million people; 1,100 people including over 350 children had lost their lives; more than 1,600 people had been injured; over 1 million houses had been partially or completely destroyed; en­tire villages had been wiped out; over 735,000 livestock had perished; 2 million acres of crops had been in­undated, and the communi­cations infrastructure had been severely damaged.

He also emphasized the need to launch a nationwide drive for increasing the for­est cover in the country, shifting from fossil fuels to alternative means of energy and building delay-action and large dams to minimize the effects of climate change.

He said that we needed to understand that any com­ment, narrative or analy­sis, having the potential to create division within the institutions or between the institutions and people of Pakistan, could never be in our national interest. 

He called upon all the po­litical parties, opinion lead­ers, eminent members of the civil society and the me­dia persons to remain with­in the confines of Article 19 of the Constitution and rel­evant laws and regulations while discussing or com­menting on institutions.