PPP Parliamentary Leader in Senate, Senator Sherry Rehman on Monday criticized the government’s lack of transparency and chronic indecision over its bailout negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Rehman said, “Seven months of dithering and false promises later, we are now hearing that the government is after all, going for a bailout package. This unnecessary back and forth is hurting our already ailing economy. PTI ran its campaign promising that Pakistan will be self-sufficient under their leadership. However, all the economic steps they have taken so far have contradicted the core of their economic vision”. Rehman said, “The recent mini budget itself has become controversial as parliament has not voted on it. Questions are naturally being asked about this chaotic and patently undemocratic way of dysfunction. Is the voting being delayed to disguise facts not being disclosed? We are all Pakistanis and would have shared the burden but the open disregard for parliament is now a key hallmark of this government’s modus operandum. There is no precedence in democratic governments for such authoritarianism coupled with ineptitude. Both are costing the federation dearly”. “The countless u-turns have made it extremely difficult to wrap one’s head around what the government is trying to do with the economy. We are hearing different answers to a rather straightforward question, is the government going to accept a bailout package or not? Instead of giving a concise and clear-cut answer, the government has decided to stick to its unrealistic economic vision without a feasible plan. As a result, our macroeconomic situation continues to deteriorate. This government has borrowed an unprecedented amount of Rs3.77 trillion in a span of 7 months. We are now borrowing just to pay interest on loans taken. Our foreign reserve is at an all-time low and is only surviving on loans taken at the last minute, of which the terms we still do not know to this day. Published in Daily Times, February 12th 2019.