Zardari removes Farhatullah Babar as spokesperson

LAHORE: Veteran politician senator Farhatullah Babar was removed as the spokesperson of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) co-chairperson Asif Ali Zardari, a day after he criticised his party for backing off from upholding the parliament’s supremacy.

Speaking to media, PPP secretary information Nafisa Shah said Babar had tendered his resignation a couple of days ago and that it had been accepted by Zardari.

“Farhatullah Babar is a PPP senior and an asset of the party. He is and will remain the Secretary-General of the PPP-Parliamentarians,” she said.

However, party official told media that Babar had been removed after his farewell speech on the floor of the Senate wherein he said his party had backed off from upholding the parliament’s supremacy.

In his speech on Tuesday, the outgoing senator lamented that the supremacy of the parliament was ending, saying a state within the state was coming into existence and that there existed a conflict between the two.

If the parliament did not end the defacto state then it would lead to a collision between institutions, he added.
Babar had said that other institutions impinged the authority of the parliament. He said that the accountability committee tried to hold everyone accountable; however, his own party backed away.

The PPP leader had said the situation was moving towards a conflict between the institutions.

The 18th Amendment and the shifting of the autonomy to the provinces were being rolled back, which, in turn, can lead to smaller provinces demanding equal status as that of Punjab, he said.
The PPP leader said that due to the persisting danger, the onus of saving Pakistan is on the Parliament.
Politicising the judiciary and vice versa had endangered the parliament, the senator said.
“It is concerning when the Chief Justice of Pakistan promises that he has no political agenda,” said Babar.
Babar further said it was concerning when judges lean on ‘contempt of court’ for their integrity.
“There is a wise man in my village, ‘Baba Rehmatay’, who says the constitution is superior to the parliament,” said Babar.
“’Baba Rehmatay’ says the Constitution is not what is written, it is what he says,” remarked Babar.
The senator said that when it comes to the scope of influence of institutions, the parliament was failing.
In November 2017, Babar resigned from the parliamentary committee on accountability laws. Then, on October 20, he stepped down from the Senate’s Standing Committee on Defence, without offering to the media his reason for resignation.