ISLAMABAD: On the eve of the International Democracy day, former President Asif Ali Zardari said that democracy demands that all institutions respect the limits imposed on them by the Constitution of Pakistan.
In a message issued by the Pakistan People’s Party, the former president said that democracy was much more than merely holding elections periodically to distribute political power among parties and individuals according to their electoral strength.
“Rule of law, restraining oneself within the constitutional limits, transparent and across the board accountability and tolerance to dissent are also critical elements of democracy,” he said.
“The enemies of democracy keep changing guise and tactics. From direct assault on the democracy in the past, we have witnessed democratic edifice assaulted by such devices as the doctrine of necessity, the so called legal frame work order and provisional constitutional orders (PCOs).”
“Fighting militancy and corruption are laudable aims and must be pursued with vigor but let not altruism be used as an excuse to overstep the constitutional limits and authority,” said the PPP co-chairman.
“The perception of powerful institutions overstepping their constitutional limits and treading into the domain of other institutions is not a good omen for the stability of democratic structures and needs to be addressed urgently and meaningfully,” he said. “Such perceptions must not be allowed to gain strength.”
Zardari also cautioned against threats to democracy from what he described as ‘the militant mindset’ seeking to impose their extremist agenda through force.
Congratulating democratic forces in the world in general and in Pakistan in particular on the International Day of Democracy, the former president expressed the hope that the celebrations today would enhance the awareness of people of Pakistan to the new forms of threats to democracy and guard against them.
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The 68th Anniversary of the Founding of the People’s Republic of China.
— The Daily Mail - People's Daily