Govt respects journalists”
LAHORE: Muhammadmian Soomro, the Senate chairman and acting president of Pakistan, said on Wednesday that the government respected journalists and that any violence against them was regrettable. “He told reporters after a Pakistan Muslim League (PML) programme held in connection with PML’s centenary celebrations that the recent beating of journalists was regrettable and that parliament had discussed the issue.”
He said the general elections in 2007 would be held on time and that the assemblies would complete their constitutional term. Soomro refused to comment on the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal’s (MMA) threat to resign from the assemblies, saying it was “up to them”. About the return of the exiled Altaf Hussain and former prime ministers Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto, he said everybody should play his or her role for Pakistan’s well being, integrity and development. Earlier, he told a seminar held by the Nazriya-e-Pakistan Foundation that Pakistan needed to be united and that people must vote in favour of those who give preference to national interests.should aim to strengthen the country.
Soomro also spoke at an award distributing ceremony organised by the Punjab Education Assessment System (PEAS) at Holiday Inn. He said the government was keen on establishing the education sector, as it was a must for Pakistan’s economic and social development. He said it was for the first time in the country’s history that the president, prime minister, cabinet members, governors and chief ministers were directly working to develop education. He asked Education Department officials to discourage students from dropping out from school. He also urged them to focus on primary education, saying that was the foundation of academic life. Praise for Soomro: Participants at the ceremony were impressed by Soomro’s etiquette, as he stood up to honour speakers when their names were called out. Several audience members told Daily Times that they were glad to see such a senior government official with such etiquette.