Cricketer turned politician Imran Khan has claimed victory in Pakistan’s election after unofficial results claimed he had taken the majority lead.
Addressing the nation from his home in Banigala, he said it was a historic election in Pakistan.
“In this election, people have sacrificed a lot. Here was terrorism in this election. I want to especially praise the people of Balochistan, the kind of difficulties that they had to face. The way they came out to vote, I want to thank all those people. I want to praise them because they strengthened our democracy.”
He also mentioned the killing of candidates Ikram Gandapur and Haroon Bilour in suicide attacks. ” Despite all that, this election process was completed.I want to thank the security forces … my party members, where we had suicide attacks in 10 locations, I want to commend all of them.”
Stating that his inspiration was the Prophet Muhammad, the city of Medina that he founded, how it was based on humanity, Imran Khan said “for the first time, the state was formed based on humanitarianism. That is my inspiration, that Pakistan should have that kind of humanitarian state, where we take responsiblity for our weaker classes.
“The weak are dying of hunger. I will try my best – all of my policies will be made to raise our weaker classes, for our labourers … for our poor farmers, who work all year and get no money … 45 percent of children have stunted growth, they don’t reach the right height, or their brains don’t develop, ” he said.
“My effort will be that we try our best to raise these people up, that all of our policies be focused on human development. I want the whole country toi think like this.No country can prosper when there is a small island of rich people, and a sea of poor. I want all of Pakistan to unite. I want to make it clear that anyone who was against us, who voted against us, I think the kind of personal attacks that I have seen, no one has seen those, but I have forgotten all of those, they are behind me. … my cause is far bigger than just my person,” he said.
On law of the country, he said they would act against those who violates the law. “Our state institutions will be so strong that they will stop corruption. Accountability will start with me, then my ministers, and then it will go from there. We will set an example of how the law is the same for everyone. If the West is ahead of us today, it is because their laws are not discriminatory …. this will be our biggest guiding principle.”
Noting that the biggest challenge the country faced was economic crisis, Imran said ” we have never had such a huge fiscal deficit. All of this is because our economy is going down because of dysfunctional institutions. We need to make an atmosphere for doing business. I think our greatest asset is our overseas Pakistanis. We will fix governance and invite them to invest here.
Our second problem is unemployment. We have the second youngest population in the world.”
Imran Khan said the country needed to have good relations with all neighbours because of the economic crisis.
“China gives us a huge opportunity through CPEC, to use it and drive investment into Pakistan.We want to learn from China how they brought 700 million people out of poverty. The other thing we can learn from China is the measures they have taken against corruption, how they have arrested more than 400 ministers there, ” he said.
On Afghanistan, he said Afghanistan’s people as well as pakistan need peace in that country. “We will make every effort to achieve peace there.We want to have open borders with Afghanistan one day, ” he said.
With the US, he said “we want to have a mutually beneficial relationship. Until now, that has been one way, the US thinks it gives us aid to fight their war. we want both countries to benefit, we want a balanced relationship.”
Imran also mentioned about improving ties with Iran and Saudi Arabia.