Caretaker PM disapproves PTI’s move of writing a letter to IMF

ISLAMABAD  -   Pakistan Tehreek-e- Insaf (PTI) on Wednesday wrote a letter to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), calling on the global lender to ensure that its guidelines with respect to good governance as well as conditionalities must be satisfied prior to the grant of next finance facility to Pakistan.

The letter written by PTI Secretary Information Raoof Hasan on behalf of incarcerated party founder Imran Khan demanded an election audit of at least 30 percent of the national and provincial assemblies’ seats.

In its letter addressed to the lender’s Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva, PTI at the very outset clarified that it did not wish to stand in the way of any IMF facility to the state of Pakistan that “promotes the immediate as well as the long term economic well-being of the country.” 

“It is clear that such facility, along with the national commitment to bring about necessary reforms that facilitate repayment and enable the country to stand on its own feet, can only be negotiated in the best interests of the people of Pakistan by a duly elected government that has the trust of the people of Pakistan,” it stated. 

The letter further said the PTI was aware of the importance IMF attached to good governance, transparency, upholding the rule of law and curbing corrupt practices while entering financing agreements with member countries. 

“It is a well-established reality that a government without legitimate representation, when imposed upon a country, carries no moral authority to govern, and, in particular, to carry out taxation measures,” the letter said. 

It further said that in the previous interaction held between Khan and IMF representatives last year, the PTI had agreed to support the lender’s financing facility involving Pakistan on the condition and reassurance of a free and fair election. 

PTI in the letter alleged that February 8 polls were subjected to widespread intervention and fraud in the counting of votes and compilation of results. 

“An audit of at least thirty percent of the national and provincial assemblies’ seats should be ensured, which can be accomplished in merely two weeks,” PTI demanded in the letter. 

The letter highlighted that PTI was not calling for the IMF to adopt the role of an investigative agency itself as there were two indigenous organisations in Pakistan namely the Free and Fair Election Network (Fafen) and PATTAN-Coalition that have proposed comprehensive methodologies to conduct the election audit.

“Such a role by the IMF would be a great service to Pakistan and its people, and could become the harbinger of enduring prosperity, growth, and macroeconomic stability in the country,” the letter concluded. 

Separately, PTI leader Gohar Ali Khan confirmed that a letter was sent to the IMF through its Resident Representative in Pakistan.

Addressing a press conference here along with other party leaders, he said that PTI did not want to harm Pakistan’s economy in any way; however, they just wanted to remind the fund its promise pertaining to holding transparent elections in the country. 

Meanwhile, Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar on Wednesday expressing his disapproval over Pakistan Tehreek- e-Insaf leadership’s latest political salvo of writing a letter to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), termed it ‘highly irresponsible’.

Appearing in a talk show of a private TV channel (SAMAA news), the prime minister said the letter was sent at time when the caretaker government had worked significantly for the economic revival with the relevant indicators showing positive trends, besides it achieved different financial targets. 

The negotiations with the IMF were in the process for $6 billion dollars agreement which was important for the economic health of the country, he said, adding moreover, different multilateral agreements were also dependent over it. 

He said that there were appropriate forums for the electoral disputes and the PTI’s gesture of writing a letter to the IMF was unjustified and highly irresponsible. 

However, he maintained that in the tangible terms, the letter would have no effects, but it would have political costs for the PTI that had a narrative in that regard. 

To a question, the caretaker prime minister said that he had appeared before the Islamabad High Court (IHC) in the Baloch missing persons’ case to show that the interim set-up was functioning under a constitutional order. The court’s orders should be respected and he appeared before it to reiterate the same stance and set a precedent, he added.

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