Musharraf could be impeached in July

June 24th, 2008 - 1:02 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Pervez Musharraf

Islamabad, June 24 (IANS) Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf could be impeached in July, albeit via an indirect route, with parliament washing its hands of the issue, a report here said Tuesday. The ruling coalition might ask the four provincial assemblies to pass resolutions calling for the president’s impeachment in the hope that he would then step down.

The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) that leads the coalition discussed the proposal with alliance partner Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N), The News quoted a senior PML-N leader as saying.

According to him, the PPP leadership was trying to bring the PML-N around to the view that instead of tabling an impeachment motion in parliament, pressure should be built by issuing anti-Musharraf statements, followed by resolutions against him in the provincial assemblies, where the coalition commands a two-thirds majority.

“The PPP strongly believes that either Musharraf will soon bow out or the proposed resolutions, when passed, will leave him with no option but to say goodbye to the presidency,” the PML-N leader said.

Party chairman Muhammad Zafarul Haq confirmed that in principle the PPP wanted Musharraf to quit on his own. The other parties in the coalition also favoured the president’s impeachment at the earliest because he was considered the main source of political instability in the country.

Haq also admitted to differences between his party and the PPP on the methodology of proceeding against Musharraf but expressed confidence that a consensus would soon be evolved.

“We want him to resign before we go for the option, which will set a bad tradition in Pakistan’s parliamentary history,” PPP spokesman Farhatullah Babar said, when asked about PPP’s stance on Musharraf’s impeachment.

“The message from the ruling coalition is loud and clear from day one. When no one is there to defend him in parliament or outside, how can he survive?” Babar asked.

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