Invisible technocrats’ set-up in making

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By Senator Rehman Malik

THE international definition of technocrat’s government is defined as:“It is a form of government wherein decision-makers are chosen for a governing office based on their technical expertise and background. Basically it is by product of Presidential system but is often used as stop gap arrangements in Parliamentary debacles”.

Technocracy differs from a traditional democracy in that individuals elected to a leadership role are chosen through a process that emphasizes their relevant skills and proven performance, as opposed to whether or not they fit the majority interests of a population. Decisions made by technocrats are based on information derived from methodology rather than opinion or will of the people.

Since independence, Pakistan has been ruled thrice by military for over 3 decades and the rest of the time it has been ruled by a weak and controlled democracy. Although Pakistan is now being run through a democratic government yet the elections have always remained disputed with counter allegations from both the sides. All stakeholders have their own well-defined agendas.

Although the past governments always remained under attack and every incoming government rather than bringing stability to the democratic system remained busy in blaming the outgoing governments for their perceived blunders made by the later thus further eroding the stability in the governance and the democratic institutions.

The nation is completely confused as to why present government policies are going towards failure especially the economic policies. We are being governed by a government without having a proper plan and agenda for the people. The success of a government is judged by a common man and not by an elite class.

In my recent article namely “Will the economic tsunami engulf the government? “I had given my assessment on economic instability predicting that the economic tsunami will engulf the government as well as the system but the word system was omitted by my Editor from the article.

We have witnessed how within less than 48 hours of my article, seven important ministries were reshuffled including the key players Asad Umar, Fawad Chaudhary, Ghulam Sarwar Khan, Amir Kiyani and Shehryar Afridi.

I will not go into details as to how they got sacked but if we closely look into the re-shuffle, we would come to know that all of the newly appointed ministers were used to be the members of other parties like PPP. PMLN and PMLQ. It is surprising to see that despite Imran Khan’s tall claims of selection on merit he has lost his true and rightful members, who stood by him and only belonged to PTI, by inducting cross-party technocrats in to his cabinet.

When we have an overall picture of the newly reshuffled cabinet, we see an unconsented and invisible technocrat government in place with Imran Khan as its figurehead. Kindly allow me to say that it is the first phase for nation to witness the government run by technocrat, which would lately emerge as a strong and visible technocratic government as this system cannot run on ad-hoc basis.

Currently, we have a weak semi technocratic government, which will continue to go weaker and weaker by every passing day as it is not performing on both external and internal fronts like diplomacy and financial sectors.

We spoiled our relations with Afghanistan with recent undiplomatic statements and also Iran is becoming hostile towards us as both are visibly going closer to India.

I hope that Imran Khan would have reminded Iran as to how we smashed Jandullah group fighting against Iran in the recent past rather than shifting the blames on his own country. Pakistan assisted them in fighting the group as we had captured and arrested Jandallah’s leader. Despite Pakistan’s support, they have always castigated Pakistan’s efforts in tackling the insurgency in Iran.

The situation seems to be getting out of hands of government in controlling the terrorism, as there have been 12 plus attacks in different parts of the country since PTI took over, because it completely lacks policies to tackle the menace of the terrorism. The success of any government in the field of counter terrorism can be judged from its policies, yet this government is trying to take the credit of work done by previous government or things, which are happening due to the policies of the previous government. This contributes as major failure of this Government as “look busy do nothing” is their only policy.

The Tsunami slogan having been enchanted for decades looks to be the tsunami of troubled economy coupled with growing inflation. Middle, lower, salaried and millions of people living below poverty line are facing acute difficulties to meet their daily ends. Within less than 9 months, the governance of the PTI government has generated anger in the public and it is likely that this anger may take shape of tsunami, which could wipe out the PTI and its regime from the political fabric of the country. It is assumed that the growing inflation and declining growth with constant devaluation of rupee have forced the present Government to reshuffle the portfolios of its Cabinet members. These disastrous situations might pave the way for the ouster of this government.

The system being run by PM’s invisible national government may not be able to overcome the political crises / economic crises and security inability.

The present government neither looks fully democratic nor a National Government. It is an unholy mixture of deserted political fugitives from other parties taking political asylum to get indemnity.

(The writer is Chairman of think tank “global eye” & former Interior Minister of Pakistan. rmalik1212@gmail.com@GlobalEye_GSA)