Addressing a workers’ convention in Abbottabad, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari urged voters to consider him as an alternative to the three-time former premier, Nawaz Sharif, without explicitly naming him. Bilawal, a former foreign minister during the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) government, pledged not to disappoint the nation if elected as the country’s premier.
During his speech, Bilawal highlighted the PPP’s commitment to representing marginalized sections of society, citing the party’s enduring influence over three generations. He praised his father’s contributions to Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, noting the name change from NWFP to Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa during Asif Ali Zardari’s presidency.
Bilawal credited the initiation of the Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) for alleviating hardships faced by the impoverished population. Despite acknowledging the party’s achievements, he expressed concern over historic levels of inflation and poverty in Pakistan.
Critiquing what he perceived as a lack of awareness among politicians, bureaucracy, and the government regarding ground realities, Bilawal criticized the traditional politics of older parties. He urged the public to consider the PPP’s manifesto as a solution to the country’s challenges, emphasizing the need for a change in leadership.
Bilawal refrained from viewing PML-N and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) as adversaries, focusing instead on combating inflation and poverty. He stressed the importance of choosing leaders based on intention and a unified ideology rather than the number of times someone has held the position of prime minister. Bilawal asserted that addressing the country’s problems and serving the people is feasible with the right intention and a cohesive manifesto.
Underlining a commitment to people-centric governance, the PPP chairman asserted that his political strength would derive solely from the people, aligning with the PPP’s belief that the public is the ultimate source of power. He advocated for being a “ladla” (darling) of the people rather than the establishment’s, expressing readiness to serve if given the opportunity and emphasizing that the decision ultimately lies in the hands of the people.