Jun 042008

* Memon says PML-N and PPP unjustified in demanding president’s resignation
* India and Afghanistan could be helping Baloch insurgency

QUETTA: Former federal minister Nisar Memon predicted on Tuesday that President Pervez Musharraf would not resign as president because he was a “brave man” who was capable of handling pressure from political parties.

Memon, who twice served as a federal minister in the past nine years, told a press conference that the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) were unjustified in their demands to ask the president to quit the office of the Presidency. He said the president was voted into power for five years and the political parties, in the interest of democracy, should respect the democratic mandate that was granted to Musharraf in the presidential elections held last year.

“It is shameful that the political parties are pressuring a democratically elected president to leave. But I am sure President Musharraf will not resign. He is a brave, competent and fearless leader who has rendered unmatched services for Pakistan,” he added.

Memon said that the newly formed PPP-PMLN government had failed to meet the people’s expectations. Therefore, he said, both parties were trying to create “issues where there were none”. In order to hide their own weaknesses and blunders, they agreed upon a single-point agenda to oust Musharraf, he added. He said that these parties should concede the good services the president rendered for the nation. “President Musharraf never cheated the nation. When he promised to shed his uniform, he did so. Similarly, he held general and local bodies’ elections twice, despite speculations that he would not uphold his promise,” he said.

Memon accused the PPP and the PML-N of resorting to “undemocratic traditions”. He said the PML-Quaid, despite a major defeat in the general elections, had wholeheartedly accepted the peoples’ verdict. The former ruling party did not accuse anyone of rigging the polls and chose to sit on the opposition benches, he added. Members of the PML-Q also voted for Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani, he said.

Hidden forces: The former Information minister said that when the PML-Q had ruled the country, it had repeatedly been accused of either being powerless, or working on the directives of “hidden forces”. Now, he said, it was time for the PML-N and the PPP to inform the nation of the “hidden forces” that were preventing them from reaching consensus on several issues, including that of the reinstatement of the judges.

Foreign: Memon claimed that India and Afghanistan might be involved in fanning the Baloch insurgency to destabilise Pakistan. He said the PML-Q regretted not being able to settle the issues faced by the province due to lack of time and opportunity.

He also criticised the new government for reversing the economic progress made by the country during the past nine years. The new government is undoing the “successful economic policies” because of political differences, he claimed, adding such practices were causing severe damage to the country’s economy.

Source: Daily Times, 4/6/2008

 Posted by at 9:07 am

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