08 August, 2008
Leaders of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) have agreed to begin impeachment proceedings against President Pervez Musharraf, charging him with violating the Constitution, weakening the federation and other state institutions and causing a critical economic impasse.
“The coalition believes that it has become imperative to move for impeachment under Article 47 (of the Constitution),” PPP co-chairman Asif Zardari said at a news conference he addressed here on Thursday along with his partners in the ruling coalition, including PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif, after three days of hectic dialogue.
The communique contains a complete plan for impeachment proceedings and an outline of the charge-sheet that will be presented along with a resolution for impeachment in a joint sitting of parliament.
All the four provincial assemblies will adopt resolutions demanding that President Musharraf should seek a vote of confidence immediately in accordance with a commitment made in the Supreme Court.
The coalition decided to initiate the process if the president failed to take a confidence vote.
Mr Zardari did not give dates for convening the sessions of the national and provincial assemblies.
However, according to sources, the government is planning to convene the sessions on Aug 11 because it wants to complete the process of impeachment by the end of the current month.
The coalition claimed to have the required strength in parliament to impeach the president.
Reacting sharply, leader of the Tehrik-e-Insaf, Imran Khan has said that the announcement of impeachment of President Musharraf is another attempt to buy more time to rule the country and deceive the people of Pakistan.
Meanwhile, President Pervez Musharraf was reported as saying he will not accept his defeat vowing to fight his impeachment bid by the ruling coalition.
President Musharraf in holding talks with his political allies and Constitutional experts here, reportedly said while talking to one of his close-ally that he could not see the country to go towards defiance.
He said that he did his best to defend the country as President and Chief of Army Staff.
He vowed to adopt all ‘legal’ means in his defence against impeachment motion.
However, another source privy to Musharraf’s state said the president would not use his discretionary power to dissolve the National Assembly and dismiss the government because he had been too much incapacitated.
Would President Musharraf invoke article 58-2B to forestall his impeachment, and with what consequences?
Will President Musharraf present himself before the assembly to get the vote of confidence from it, and with what results?
Will a President denuded of all powers not render him to be yet another Ch. Fazal Illahi or Rafiq Tarar type of rubber stamp president and affect the ‘Check and Balance” of powers between the Chief Executive and the Head of the state? Comments please.