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President hopes country’s fate to change during five years

ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi, while expressing his satisfaction over the performance of incumbent government so far, hoped that the country’s fate would change within next five years.

In his interview to a television channel, the president said the government was heading in the right direction.

Spelling out his priorities he said he desired to strive for betterment of the health sector in the country like prevention of various disease such as breast cancer, measles and others in coordination with the health minister.

He said the provision of justice and protection and women rights were the subjects he desired to focus.

The president said his office had a key role for integration of the federation and that he wanted to work for uplifting the education, health and other sectors in Balochistan province.

To a question about the austerity drive of current government, the president said he was currently living in single bed suit in the President House and advocated for opening the rest of the building to the public.

While opposing the unnecessary foreign visits by the president, he said his first visit to Turkey was scheduled for the prime minister was he unable to go. Moreover, he expressed the desire to offer Umrah – but on his personal expense.

He said in order to cut expenditures, he had declared his own residence in Karachi as his camp office besides ending his protocol and reducing unnecessary security convoys to avoid any disturbance to public.

Responding to a question about his maiden speech in the parliament, the president said besides discussing country’s foreign policy and issues, it highlighted the vision of the newly-formed government but the next speeches would describe the government’s performance.

He said he had also applauded the sacrifices and expertise of Pakistan armed forces against terrorism contrary to many other countries who had failed to tackle the menace.

Reiterating the government’s resolve against corruption, the president said National Accountability Bureau (NAB) would have to prove its impartiality and shun the opposition’s allegations of any backing by the government.

The president however called for across the board accountability and added that any compromise in the process would hurt the country.

Regarding the appreciation of dollar against rupee, he said the previous government had artificially controlled the dollar value which is now being reflected in the market.

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