PPP manifesto targets Musharraf

December 3rd, 2007 - 3:50 pm ICT by admin  

Islamabad, Dec 3 (ANI): The manifesto of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) for the January 8 general elections has thrown up surprises quite disturbing for the Pervez Musharraf-led establishment.
The manifesto, which is not in accordance with the Musharrafs policy directions, has surprised both her critics and diplomats in Islamabad.
It is said to be closer in its content and formulations to the PML-N of Nawaz Sharif, rather than the liberal anti-extremism agenda of Musharraf.
Such a manifesto comes at a time when critics of Benazir Bhutto say she is helping Musharraf by participating in the elections. Some even claim that both Benazir and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam leader Maulana Fazalur Rehman are secretly negotiating with Musharraf.
In an indirect reference towards Musharraf, the PPP has demanded that military dictators responsible for subverting the Constitution must be answerable to the people of Pakistan.
Understandably, the manifesto has many other points on which Musharraf will disagree with the PPP.
The PPP has included the Charter of Democracy (COD) in the manifesto, which was signed between Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif months ago in London.
The PPP has promised things, which hit at the power base of Musharraf, which include the appointment of governors, the three services chiefs and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS) by the prime minister who will be the chief executive; the National Security Council to be abolished and replaced by the old Defence Committee of the Cabinet (DCC) headed by the prime minister, Nuclear Command and Control will be placed under the DCC; all security agencies including the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and the Military Intelligence (MI) will be answerable to the prime minister, The News reported.
Pro-Musharraf Pakistan Muslim League-Q (PML-Q) has rejected these points and claimed that the PPP through its manifesto has sent a message to the ruling establishment making it to think twice before reposing full faith in Benazir.
On the appointment of judges to the superior courts, the manifesto says that they will be made with the advice and consent of a joint parliamentary committee consisting of equal representatives of the government and the opposition and on the recommendation of a commission headed by a former chief justice, who has not taken oath under the Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO).
This point can disturb the fan club of the deposed Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, who took oath under the PCO many years ago.
The PPP has also promised to establish a Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) to investigate how the so-called National Accountability Bureau was used to commit perjury and wasted national resources to politically re-engineer Pakistan.
The PPP claims that it was Benazir, who liberalised Pakistans electronic media, and not Musharraf.
The manifesto says that the PPP liberated the press in 1988 by allowing free import of newsprint, the abolition of government permission to establish newspapers and journals and by introducing private radio and television stations.
PPP Information Secretary Sherry Rehman was quoted, as saying that the first private radio channel FM 100 and the first private TV station Shalimar Television Network (STN) were established in the second tenure of Benazir.
The PPP manifesto says that the future of Kashmir will be determined according to the aspirations of the people of Kashmir and the UN resolutions, but it also supports open and safe borders at the Line of Control to socially unite the Kashmiri people.
It has also promised that a treaty of peace and cooperation with Afghanistan will be signed with a commitment that the PPP will not allow Pakistans territory to be used for cross border terrorism against Afghanistan.
The PPP has proposed to build Apna Ghar, a free boarding school for socially or economically disadvantaged children, to counter the mushrooming religious seminaries (Madrassa).
The PPP is committed to confront terrorism in its manifesto, but this issue has not been presented as one of the main agenda. (ANI)

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