Pakistan News Imran Khan writes to IMF, urges audit of February 8 elections before considering bailout talks

Islamabad: Jailed former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday sent a letter to the International Monetary Fund, demanding at least 30 per cent of national and provincial assembly seats before considering any further bailout talks with the cash-strapped country. It was requested to ensure audit.

The 71-year-old Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party founder announced last week that he would ask the global lender to avoid any aid after authorities alleged rigging of election results to keep his party out of power. Is.

His party president-designate Gauhar Ali Khan, while addressing a press conference along with party general secretary Omar Ayub Khan, confirmed the letter but refused to share its contents.

A party spokesperson also said that the letter would not be shared with the media until it was validated by the party.

However, the Press Trust of India has seen a letter addressed to IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva by party spokesperson Rauf Hasan under the guidance of Khan.

It begins with the clarification that the party is not against IMF facilities to Pakistan.

“It must first be made clear that PTI does not wish to stand in the way of any IMF facility to the State of Pakistan that promotes the immediate and long-term economic well-being of the country,” the letter read.

But it also said that IMF facility should be attached with conditions.

“It is clear that such a facility, coupled with a national commitment to bring about the necessary reforms that facilitate repayment and enable the country to stand on its own feet, can only be done by a duly elected government in the best interests of the people of Pakistan. “Talks can be held. It has the confidence of the people of Pakistan.”

The letter said the IMF is committed to maintaining good governance, transparency, the rule of law and curbing corrupt practices when entering into financing agreements with member countries.

The letter states, “It is a well-established reality that a government without legitimate representation, when imposed on a country, has no moral authority to govern and especially to impose taxation measures.” It happens.”

It further reminded that in previous talks between Khan and IMF representatives last year, the party had “agreed to support the IMF financing facility attached to Pakistan on the condition and assurance of free and fair elections”.

The letter alleges that the February 8 general elections – which entailed public expenditure of 50 billion rupees or USD 180 million – were “subject to widespread interference and fraud in the counting of votes and the compilation of results”.

“This interference and fraud is so brazen that the most important IMF member countries, including the US, UK and countries that are part of the EU, have called for a full and transparent investigation into the matter.

“A mission of the European Union has investigated the general elections of February 8, 2024. The report of the said mission should be examined by the IMF and made available to the people of Pakistan,” the party said.

“Considering the policies and principles of the IMF, there should be no doubt that there has been abuse of power by some holders of public office to impose their likes and dislikes on the people of Pakistan and thus ensure their continued goes. Personal gain will not be promoted or sustained by the IMF,” the letter said.

“Therefore, we call on the IMF to give effect to the guidelines adopted by it with respect to good governance as well as the conditions that should be met before extending the financing facility, thereby reducing the burden of further debt burden on the people of Pakistan. Can be burdened. ,

The party demanded, “An audit of at least thirty percent of the seats in the national and provincial assemblies should be ensured, which can be completed in just two weeks.”

It also said that the PTI was not calling on the IMF itself to adopt the role of an investigative agency, and suggested that two indigenous organizations, including the Free and Fair Elections Network (FAFEN) and the Patton-coalition38, should have the power to conduct the elections. There are extensive methods proposed for. Election audit.

The letter concluded, “Such an IMF role would be a great service to Pakistan and its people, and could harbinger lasting prosperity, growth, and macroeconomic stability in the country.”

Gohar told a press conference that the letter was not related to the ongoing IMF program but was about any new deal with the government that would come to power in the future as a result of the fraud. Defending the letter, he said that writing a letter to the IMF is not a surprise.

PTI Secretary General Omar Ayub Khan said that before the launch of the last loan, Iman Khan had sought guarantees of clean and transparent elections from the IMF, which was given to him.

According to him, at that time the elections were to be held in November, but they were not held then and after this there was massive rigging in the elections held on February 8.

The current IMF program is expected to end in the second week of April.

Official sources said the new government would seek a new loan of about US$6 billion from the IMF to help deal with the balance of payments issue.

Pakistan was saved from default last year after the IMF provided a short-term loan of US$3 billion and it may face problems in meeting external liabilities if the new IMF loan is delayed.

Meanwhile, according to media reports, the IMF review mission is likely to visit Islamabad by the end of this month or early next month, provided the government formation at the federal and provincial levels is completed.

The Mission will finalize the main features of the anticipated medium-term bailout package for Pakistan to prevent default in repayment of foreign loans.

Earlier, the IMF review mission was scheduled to visit the country in the first week of February, but the delegation refused to visit on the eve of general elections.

(This report has been published as part of an auto-generated syndicated wire feed. Apart from the headline, there have been no edits to the copy by ABP Live.)