Bilawal comes down hard on ‘cowardly’ Nawaz for dodging debate duel

PPP chairman calls Nawaz “wanna-be fourth-time prime minister, laments deprivation of people from making “informed decision”

PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari (left) and PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif. — X/@ForeignOfficePk/AFP/File
PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari (left) and PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif. — X/@ForeignOfficePk/AFP/File
  • Bilawal challenges Nawaz to prime ministerial debate ahead of polls.
  • Invites PML-N supremo to visit and witness development in Sindh.
  • Laments deprivation of people from making informed decision.

As the verbal banter intensifies between the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PMl-N), the former’s Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari Tuesday took a jibe against the latter’s supremo Nawaz Sharif for backing out of this debate challenge.

Political tensions between the two former allies have increased in the past few weeks as the two have emerged as key political stakeholders in the country rivalling each other to gain much-wanted ground in Punjab which is set to play a key role in the upcoming polls slated for February 8.

“Another day goes by and Nawaz Sharif has still refused to accept our invitation to have a live debate of PM candidates […] It seems the wanna-be fourth-time prime minister is too cowardly to face me in a debate and allow the people of Pakistan an opportunity to make an informed choice on the election day,” Bilawal said in a social media post.

His remarks come after he challenged Nawaz to engage in a debate with him at par with presidential and prime ministerial election debates held in other countries.

In response, PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif had brushed off the PPP chairman’s proposal stressing that it would have been better if the three-time former prime was invited to inspect Sindh instead of the dare.

The back-and-forth war of words continued as Bilawal, in his quickfire surrebuttal, accepted Shebaz’s challenge inviting him to visit Karachi, Gambat Tehsil of Khairpur District and Tharparkar in Sindh.

He offered Nawaz to debate with him in Gambat, where what he claimed hospitals were better than any hospital in the Punjab, adding that the treatment here was absolutely free.

“The infrastructure of Thar will also be inspected,” he said, adding that they would compare Thar with Cholistan.

Slamming the Sharifs, Bilawal said: “Thar coal project, which was opposed by you and your brother, is not only providing cheap electricity to Karachi but Faisalabad too.”

The debate could also be held outside the National Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases (NICVD) in Karachi, the PPP stalwart noted, adding that the healthcare facility provided treatment to over 84,000 Punjab patients last year, which is proof that such facilities are not available in the Punjab hospitals.

Bilawal also asked Shehbaz not to run away and confirm a date and location for the debate dual between him and the three-time former prime minister.

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