The growing tensions between the government and the opposition are once again limiting the scope of the government’s work. Ever since the election of the majority party into the system, all experts have advised the opposition not alienate the mainstream parties since that narrative might have helped them get seats but it will no longer translate into materialisation of policies if pursued in the parliament. The recent bone of contention between the opposition and the government is the briefing regarding the implementation of the National Action Plan (NAP) - which has become an absolute must after the unsatisfactory response by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). The review meeting is also due in a couple of weeks before which the government should have a strong agenda and a work base to present to them.

The issue, however, is that for this briefing the government only wants heads of certain parties instead of pursuing this discussion in the National Assembly. The government, according to Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, is of the view that the initial briefing should remain within party leaders so that they can go back to their parties and discuss all relevant points and then open the briefing up for debate. The government feels that this is not an issue on which the entire parliament should be mobilised, whereas the opposition disagrees. The government, constituting of the majority party, needs to realise that alienation will create further problems. This issue has been raised again and again in the parliament and there is a need to address it once and for all. Those mainstream parties also managed to get a favourable number of seats which means that they are representing a sum of the population which must not be ignored.

However, the opposition also needs to play its part sensibly. Ever since the new government was formed, they have only played the role of aggressors. The countless walkouts which have been staged are not only counterproductive but have also resulted in the sluggish nature of work which we have witnessed in the first half of the fiscal year. This should not be the go-to strategy especially with so many problems plaguing Pakistan, many of which have been inherited from the past government. The initial briefing should have representation from all parties and if the government then fails to pursue the debate in the NA, the parties can voice their concerns again.