Dear Nawaz Sharif, be a man!

Published: October 30, 2010

Nawaz Sharif needs to know that saying things is not as good as doing things.

Dear Mian Saab,

I have been meaning to write you a letter for a while, hoping to ask you a few things that are annoying not only me, but the people of Pakistan; specifically, people who voted for your party.

Firstly, Mian saab, where have you been? In all honesty, apart from showing up on TV every now and then for some exclusive interview, the people of Pakistan hardly hear from you in person.

Whatever happened to the Mian Saab who used to sit among the people to hear their problems and grievances?

Secondly sir, seriously, what the whole deal with your party having no backbone at all, on any issues? When push comes to shove and action needs to be taken, you back out and instead come up with some lame statement about how you are not going to do anything, because you are safeguarding democracy. Sir, that’s not really safeguarding democracy; what you are doing is basically taking democracy hostage while playing the role of aadha teetar, aadha batair.

What I mean to say is: pick a side and stick to it for once. Because of your indecision, you neither play the role of the opposition, nor do you play an active role in government. How can you justify this behavior by saying it’s just to protect democracy?

Thirdly, Mian saab, whatever happened to having a proper party manifesto? I am sure the Muslim League has one, but have you given a thought about actually following it for once? The comments made by your party and its ministers make the party agenda sound like a single item. Initially, it was restoration of judges, then once you got that out of the way, it was the 18th amendment and now that’s done, you literally have nothing to say. I am just wondering when poverty and the economy are going to become points on your manifesto.

In addition to all that, why is your party constantly arguing about stuff that has nothing to do with the lives of ordinary people in Pakistan? I mean, the 18th amendment primarily affects politicians and the judges’ restoration was more of an ego boost for the party than anything else. But in this entire time, not once has your party discussed any comprehensive plan for job creation or improving the economy. You cannot just keep criticizing whatever is being done and call it your manifesto or agenda. You actually have to do something or provide alternatives in order to gain support for your cause. So when are you going to actually start doing something?

Three years ago, when you came back to Pakistan, we thought that you had learnt from your mistakes and returned a wiser man. A man who could potentially change the way business was done in the corridors of power and continue with the ambitious policies you started in 1997. But three years down the lane, it’s hard to see what your party has achieved. I would have appreciated your party more if you had effectively played the part of an opposition that has the guts to do what it says. Instead, your party has acted in the exact opposite manner. Again sir, with all due respect, saying things is very different from doing things.

As someone who voted for you, I would just like to say, Mian saab, man up!

Please ask your party to stop acting like a bunch of sissies and actually follow up on their promises. If you do not like the governor of Punjab, get rid of him. You have a majority in Punjab, so why aren’t you doing something? Similarly, if you do not agree with the PPP government, act like the opposition and debate their demerits in public.

Lastly, please stop saying you are doing this for democracy. We, the people of Pakistan, are not dumb. Come clean and say that you are doing this so that you can expose the PPP government for being inept and incompetent, so that in the next elections, you get more votes. It’s that simple: just come clean and be honest.

We understand that you are a politician, so it comes naturally to you but please, don’t lie.


Adnan Khalid Rasool

Currently the Deputy Executive Director Center for Enterprise, Trade and Development, Adnan is also a political analyst working mainly on electoral politics and political campaign management. He tweets at @adnanrasool

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