ISLAMABAD: Asad Umar criticised the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and said four finance ministers were changed during their term.
Addressing the National Assembly for the first time after being removed as finance minister, Umar said, “I never called Bilawal Bhutto Zardari a traitor. He alleged that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) killed the economy.”
“Bilawal said that the government is incapable and a failure so I thought I should raise the curtain and unveil the truth behind the allegations,” Umar said.
The former finance minister said that the growth was the slowest during PPP’s last tenure with Asif Ali Zardari as president. “Did no one tell Bilawal that during his party’s government the growth rate was 2.8%? Inflation stood at 12.3% during Zardari’s term,” he added.
Stating that “Bilawal is very concerned that debts are rising”, the former finance minister said, “During PPP’s government, debts rose by 135%.”
“Bilawal Sb, during your government four finance ministers were changed. One by one, all four brave finance ministers kept failing,” Umar said while responding to the PPP chairman’s criticism of the cabinet reshuffle.
In response to Bilawal saying that the PTI government is incapable, the former finance minister asked, “Bilawal Sb was your father’s government the most incompetent and incapable?”
“Today the accountability is being done of the corruption that was done during your term,” he further lashed out.
Regarding the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) not meeting its targets, Umar said, “We are working on this. During PPP’s five-year term, FBR targets were reduced by 5% yearly.”
Umar continued, “The current government is facing a lot of big economic mafias. If you wish to represent people, then you will have to stand up against these mafia.”
The former finance minister further said, “Truth should be spoken before the nation. There is no easy solution. Difficult decisions have been made and will need to be made in the future as well.”
“If the nation sees that everything will be fixed in the future then they will accept the difficult decisions,” he added.
“We will have to come out of this crisis and we will God willing,” Umar said.
‘Incompetent minister lecturing us on economic policies’
Responding to the former finance minister, PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari tweeted, “Former finance minister who was removed because his own PM said he removed incompetent ministers, is now lecturing us about how PPP’s economic policies were flawed. Obviously, Imran Khan doesn’t agree as he appointed President Zardari’s finance minister as incompetent Asad’s replacement.”