Pakistani PM promises smooth transition after May 11 elections

Islamabad, May 3 (IANS) Pakistan’s interim Prime Minister, Mir Hazar Khan Khoso Friday announced that he would transfer the reins of the government to the elected representative on completion of the May 11 parliamentary elections.

“We will not accept extension in the tenure of the caretaker government at any cost and under no circumstances,” he told the nation in a televised address, reported Xinhua.

Khoso condemned Taliban attacks on the political activists and election candidates and said the government will not allow anyone to disturb peace and play with life and property of the people or destroy peace.

“It’s unfortunate that there have been acts of terrorism in Baluchistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces and Karachi and innocent people were martyred,” he said while referring to the series of attacks.

Taliban had announced to target three major parties for what they call their secular doctrine and the parties’ support to the security forces against the militants.

The Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for killing a national assembly candidate in the port city of Karachi along with his six-year-old son.

“I strongly condemn terrorism. We are taking all measures to control terrorism,” Khoso said, adding that the government has prepared plans for deployment of army and quick action force to meet any eventuality during the elections which will respond immediately when required.

He said the government has set up a special cell in the interior ministry which will collect intelligence reports and share it with provincial government and law enforcing agencies, and this cell is also empowered to take decisions for timely action if needed.

“All resources will be used to improve security of the sensitive polling stations and their effective monitoring,” Khoso said.

The prime minister assured the people of free, fair, transparent, impartial and peaceful elections to be held on May 11.

“This is the mandate of the caretaker government and the election commission of Pakistan. The caretaker government will take all necessary steps to achieve this objective,” he said.

The prime minister’s categorical assurance about on-time elections have dispelled the impression that the on-going wave of Taliban attacks could derail the election process, senior analyst Rasool Bakhsh Raees said.

He said that some people had created doubts about the elections and it was a wise decision that the prime minister addressed the nation.

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