Friday, October 22, 2021
01:50 PM (GMT +5)

Go Back   CSS Forums > General > News & Articles > Dawn

Reply Share Thread: Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook     Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter     Submit Thread to Google+ Google+    
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #1  
Old Sunday, January 24, 2021
Member
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 42
Thanks: 0
Thanked 20 Times in 14 Posts
gulmac is on a distinguished road
Default Misplaced anger at poor show

PRIME MINISTER Imran Khan must have been filled with envy watching the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th president of the United States, given the former has publicly and repeatedly stated he fancies the US presidential system.

Mr Khan has told media interviewers how he is hamstrung by the rules that mandate he has to give a certain number of cabinet positions to elected members of parliament when he would clearly prefer to name experts to run the various ministries like the US president.

After emerging victorious in the November election, Joe Biden started to receive briefings on issues, ranging from the most immediate Covid threat, to a pandemic-hit economy, to immigration, defence, healthcare and other areas his administration would need to take immediate decisions on.

This too might have evoked envy. The prime minister said the US presidents get so much time to prepare (two and a half months between election and inauguration) and are fully briefed across issues when they assume power.

By contrast, Khan conceded, he was uninformed about key policy areas when he took office and was still struggling and learning after two and a half years — half of his term — at the helm. Is he suggesting this has had an impact on his governance?

Perhaps, he misses the elbow room, the informed decision-making that enabled him to lead his team to the 1992 Cricket World Cup win in what he said was “the twilight of my career”.

He had the freedom then to win the biggest prize in the cricketing world because he knew the game intricately, handpicked his team for the tournament; inspired his players with his ‘cornered tiger’ analogy when it looked like they may crash out of the tournament in the group stage.

His pep talk worked and after losing their first four out of five group matches, they won three in a row to edge past Australia into the semis. Their second win against giant slayers New Zealand in the semis after the group match, propelled them into the final. The rest is history.

The Pakistan team had his leadership and personal performance. But he also had the cricketing counsel of Javed Miandad by his side and he had ace performers like Inzamamul Haq and Waseem Akram and others such as Mushtaq Ahmad, Rameez Raja and Moin Khan delivering at key moments.

Pakistan still has his leadership but is waiting to see his performance. Whereas those he handpicked in 1992 delivered, in government his proudest picks were Asad Umar, Murad Saeed, Faisal Vawda and ‘Jaan Allah ko deni hai’ Shehryar Afridi (the list is not exhaustive by any means) among the elected ministers. Shibli Faraz was added to this list later.

Then there are nearly a dozen Musharraf-era ministers most of whom also have turned in zero performance against their names this time too. In fact, some have cost us dearly like Aviation Minister Sarwar Khan who has rightly earned the sobriquet ‘PIA’s executioner’. Mr Khan’s love-hate relationship with Musharraf and his era is baffling to say the least.

In any case, these were elected members of parliament and the prime minister had no choice but to include a certain number in his cabinet as required by the Constitution. But have those he had the freedom to induct from the outside done any better?

After all Shahbaz Gill, Usman Dar, Nadeem Babar, Raoof Hasan, Moeed Yusuf, Shahzad Akbar and many others who make up his army of advisers and special assistants have delivered nothing, though some may justify their existence by citing their daily TV appearances or pointless pieces in the media.

It is ironic that the prime minister often cites his 18 years of mostly playing cricket in England as a great learning experience of how democracy and the media works in the UK. But in terms of his political grooming, it seems, the Westminster-style democracy has played no part.

When a party is elected to office, after having spent time on the opposition benches, its leader takes over as prime minister seamlessly as he/she has shadowed the previous prime minister and questioned government policies in the Commons on a daily basis.

This questioning of the policies is done in an informed manner as all parties and leaders have their policy units constantly looking at government policy, developing alternatives where warranted and briefing the leader. Key members of the opposition in parliament form the ‘shadow cabinet’.

Each cabinet member is ‘shadowed’ by a designated member of the opposition party in parliament and they have their own advisers, special assistants even policy unit specific to their department or ministry. They prepare for government themselves while challenging the incumbents.

Almost without fail, the prime minister, the cabinet as well as the opposition leader and the shadow cabinet appear daily in parliament. Those in power are challenged with facts and display fortitude and good humour even when facing the harshest criticism.

The point being made is that from a distance the US presidency may look all-powerful and almost bereft of any oversight which an ‘honest and sincere’ occupant of the White House can put to great use to cleanse society of all evil and deliver a just, egalitarian system. The reality is different.

Even as the US president has immense executive powers, the incumbent has the Congress breathing down his neck at all times and has to engage with its members. Even the apparently autocratic and whimsical Trump had to. The media is not far when the president and/or a member of the administration falters in delivery or in conduct.

Autocracy can only replace democracy; never be in sync with it. Given our experience of ‘technocrats or experts’ in cabinets in unrepresentative dispensations, it is clear that expertise is pointless if it does not have what it takes to make the lives of the shirtless better.

It takes integrity, a huge amount of homework, a good team and your heart in the right place to be able to deliver. Self-righteous indignation and invective are a very poor alternative.

Abbas Nasir

Published in Dawn, January 24th, 2021
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to gulmac For This Useful Post:
mrizwanashraf (Sunday, January 24, 2021)
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Francis Bacon Essays zohaib Essays 63 Wednesday, March 28, 2012 06:54 PM
Anger Management Sakk Humorous, Inspirational and General Stuff 0 Wednesday, July 28, 2010 12:52 AM
Short Temper Last Island Islam 0 Friday, April 03, 2009 07:48 PM
Forgiveness And Its Benefits On Health - Quran Nonchalant Islam 2 Monday, April 21, 2008 12:54 PM


CSS Forum on Facebook Follow CSS Forum on Twitter

Disclaimer: All messages made available as part of this discussion group (including any bulletin boards and chat rooms) and any opinions, advice, statements or other information contained in any messages posted or transmitted by any third party are the responsibility of the author of that message and not of CSSForum.com.pk (unless CSSForum.com.pk is specifically identified as the author of the message). The fact that a particular message is posted on or transmitted using this web site does not mean that CSSForum has endorsed that message in any way or verified the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message. We encourage visitors to the forum to report any objectionable message in site feedback. This forum is not monitored 24/7.

Sponsors: ArgusVision   vBulletin, Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.