President Dr. Arif Arif Alvi addressed a special joint session of the parliament on Thursday.
The session marred with protests was jointly chaired by the speakers of the lower and upper houses of Parliament including National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervez Ashraf and the Senate Sadiq Sanjrani.
While the members of Dr. Alvi’s political party, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), boycotted the session.
President in his address raised issues of floods, and national cohesion as he discussed the state of the republic
President pointed out that if the relief work was not done on time, the human and economic losses from the floods would have been higher.
“I want to felicitate the Pakistan Army for helping victims while sacrificing their lives. The federal and provincial governments, PDMA (Provincial Disaster Management Authority), and NDMA (National Disaster Management Authority) all worked hard on the ground. I thank all of them.”
“Pakistan’s contribution to global warming was not even 1 percent, but the country was suffering the most”, he said.
“I want to commend agencies and the government for the way they worked. I believe they deserve commendation.”
“Agriculture is our economic backbone. We must look towards countries that are progressing in this sector,” he said
“The Netherlands is 19 times smaller than Pakistan but it progressed so much on the agricultural front, and my country should have progressed more in this field. If we adopt a scientific approach, Pakistan can beat the world,” he stated.
“The way we tackled Covid should also be commended. Our neighbors suffered huge damage due to Covid but we didn’t,” he said.
The president lauded the nation for fighting terrorism and brought the parliament’s attention to education, “Members of parliament must focus on this.”
President of Pakistan Dr. Alvi warned against neglecting the youth as he called for the inclusion of children who were out of school.
“I have spoken to ulema that mosques should have sessions to provide school education. If you can’t provide education to children, give them skills,” he highlighted.
The president added that online education could be used for infusing knowledge among the youth.
“There are good educational institutions that can help in this initiative.”
Pakistan also needed to build a mechanism to provide employment to the people, he said.
Alvi stressed that children needed to be prepared for the future. “Several smaller countries are ahead of Pakistan in cyber power while our policies are weak in this respect.”
“Our defense establishment needed cyber power to protect the utilities and financial institutions”, he said, adding that in the future, wars would be fought in the cyber world, hence, Pakistan needed to focus on that.”
The mandatory address of the president to the joint sitting of the parliament became due at the start of the National Assembly’s parliamentary year on August 14.
This is the fifth and the last presidential address to the current Parliament.
Meanwhile, National Assembly will meet tomorrow at 10.30 am.