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Sayeeda Warsi: We should allow democracy a chance in Pakistan

KARACHI: Baroness Saeeda Warsi, the first-ever Muslim member of the UK’s Prime Minister David Cameron cabinet, said that Pakistan’s democracy has a bright future but for that the democratic process should be allowed to continue.

Talking exclusively to The News via phone from the UK, Warsi said: “I believe that we should let the democratic process continue in Pakistan and allow the infant democracy a chance to grow.”

Warsi said that the time is approaching when current democratic government in Pakistan will give way to another democratic government.

“Handing over power to another democratically-elected government through a democratic process will be a historical moment for Pakistan,” she said and added she is hopeful one would be able to see the emergence of great democracy in the future. “But to move forward for a better future, we have to allow this process of growth to take place and we need to be patient,” she stressed. Warsi said that she was quite optimistic about the future of Pakistan and that things will improve, adding Pakistan has a lot of potential which needs to be discovered and utilized properly.

She said that during her visit to Pakistan in January this year she met a large number of businessmen and professionals which made her to realise that people have mixed feelings about the future of Pakistan.

On interfaith harmony especially between Muslims and Christians, she said: “I have been working on bringing interfaith harmony, especially after 9/11. I, as a Muslim, think it is my responsibility to try to make the two sides come together and talk. I have over the years managed to do so and have had offered a platform where people from different religious background have come together and talked on a variety of topics that would have been left untouched otherwise.”

“I believe in social action and I think if you can bring people of different backgrounds to work together to attain a single goal, it will help build better relations between the two,” she said and added she had embarked on several social action projects in several countries where parliamentarians and/or politicians worked together on one project for the betterment of the whole and this helped build bonds between them and they interacted in ways that would have probably been difficult otherwise.

“Say for example if public office holders from different religious/cultural backgrounds in Pakistan come together and decide to clean a local park, working together for a common goal will allow them to know each other better and a better relationship is formed between them.”

Warsi stressed that the politicians as well as people should not wait for others to do the work instead they should get together for a particular goal.

“If politicians and leaders from different parties work together, they will be able to resolve a lot of issues that would otherwise take longer to be resolved and hence improve the overall situation and make a difference in the society, as well as country as a whole.”

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