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Return of Benazir Bhutto

18 September, 2007

By Syed A. Mateen


The Vice Chairman of Pakistan People Party Makhdoom Amin Fahim has announced that Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto would be coming to Karachi on October 18, 2007 after ending her 8 years self-exile.

The presidential election is going to be held in early October 2007 and on October 12, 2007 General Pervez Musharraf would also be completing his eight years of rule.

Mohtarma has spoken on number of times to establish the rule of democracy in Pakistan and has come back with the old slogan of her late father Mr. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto  roti, kapra aur makan (bread, clothing and house) which he used during his party's election campaign in early 70's.

But to mark a specific date to establish democracy in Pakistan, it would have been more ideal for Benazir Bhutto to return on October 12 which is remembered as "coup date", as General Pervez Musharraf took over the charge of the country in a bloodless coup.

But Benazir Bhutto is returning back on October 18 which means that Mohtarma and her Pakistan’s People’s Party do not want to become a hurdle in the presidential election, otherwise she would have returned on October 12.  I do not think that any more talks between the president’s aides and Benazir Bhutto would continue and it is quite possible that members Pakistan’s Peoples Party may also resign from the parliament in protest of the election rules that are amended for the president by the Election Commission.

After the forced exile of Mian Mohammad Nawaz Sharif to Saudi Arabia on September 10, 2007, now only Benazir Bhutto is left in the political field who wanted to become Prime Minister for the third-time.

Probably, President Pervez Musharraf must have given a serious thought to make Benazir Bhutto a third-time Prime Minister, but under the present political scenario, President does not have any other choice, except to listen to Chaudhry Shujat Hussain, who has once again assured the President that PML(Q) would re-elect General Pervez Musharraf for another term of five years.

Majority of the members of the PML(Q) does not want that President General Pervez Musharraf should indirectly or directly talk with Benazir Bhutto or her party members for sharing power or developing consensus on issues, as this will put members of PML(Q) in much awkward position.

What will be new political setup in the country, one will only come to know when the general elections in the country are over. The president will then ask the head of the majority winning political party to form the new government.  

But for Mohtarma to become third-time Prime Minister, it is necessary for her to face the cases which are pending in the local courts. Once the cases are decided by the court of law and there should be no impediments on her way in filing nomination papers with the Election Commission.

Members of the present or future National Assembly also need to pass a bill with a two-third majority in the parliament that a two-time Prime Minister can also hold the office of Prime Minister for third-time.

In Sindh, the largest political party MQM has also welcomed the announcement of Benazir Bhutto that she would be returning to Karachi on October 18. It is quite possible that people of Karachi would once again witness a big rally that will come out when Benazir Bhutto will land at Karachi airport.

There is no doubt that the charismatic personality of Benazir Bhutto would once again mobilize the party workers but it entire depend that how things move politically. PPP can only dominate the country when it will secure a two-third majority in the parliament, otherwise it would be a difficult task for Benazir Bhutto to become a third-time Prime Minister.

Reader Comments:

Return of Benazir Bhutto

I personally must commend the article of Mr. Syed A. Mateen who has nicely put the words across for those who really understand what is going on. BB might change her mind to go back to Pakistan. In politics any thing can happen and with the cases behind BB there is no way she could become a PM third time when present PM Mr. Aziz has shown to the Pakistanis and entire world how important and outstanding work he has performed in the economics of Pakistan. A treasury with only $2B when Nawaz Sharif was thrown out and to-day there are more than $16.2B. BB and her spouse took the wealth of the nation out of Pakistan and left the country more poor. Public of Pakistan knows well and some of the Muslim League Leaders like Pir Pagara already said that the charm BB had is no more there and her older age might not convince Gen Musharraf and its all political wrangling and nothing for BB. Present party PML Q got majority voters backing them in Punjab the most populous province and no way BB will be able to break that stronghold. There is a very slim chance of BB to become PM third time as per seen from the circumstances in political arena. When a big rally comes out to welcome Benazir Bhutto at Karachi airport there is a likely hood of ugly scenes of 12th May 07. Not many would welcome her in Pakistan.

Mohammad, United Arab Emirates - 19 September, 2007

Benazir Tango

Benazir wanted a deal, but found the circumstances unsuitable due to the sudden cropping up of Jamia Hafsa generated suicide attacks, compounded by some of their rigid supporters within the administration, military and intelligence. She fears that, the militants would try to get together in Pakistan and then make forays once again into Afghanistan, a situation which forced her initial exit. Besides, she severally stated and eaten her words later that, any re-election of Musharraf by the existing assemblies would be unconstitutional. She also stated in one of her recent interviews to a local news channel that, she would not strike a deal with Musharraf while in uniform. But, as unpredictable she is, nothing coming from her mouth is reliable.

According to a report published recently in the American press, Benazir had assured Washington that she and her party would be willing to accept President Musharraf in exchange for fair parliamentary elections and an end to criminal charges against her, that kept her in exile. This also is, her basic ingredients of any deal with Musharraf and is an obvious good news for Washington also, in search of partners for a government that aims to modernize the country even on marginalized extremism in Pakistan. Therefore, she went to the US for further confirmation of the deal.

From visible ground realities, so far there is no breakthrough in any deal with President Musharraf. Since Bush administration strongly believes in maintaining Musharraf at the helm of affairs, it wants the moderate political parties to come to terms with Musharraf. Something which has bogged down the deal for the present. And, according to the analysts, due to this reason, Benazir was unable to see President Bush at his this year's annual breakfast-prayer meeting in Washington. In her frustration, Benazir had made a statement during her press conference arranged at Maryland, rejecting any meeting with US officials stating that, they were unpredictable.

There is an intense speculation going in Pakistani political circles that Benazir will eventually cut a deal with Musharraf under persistent prompting from Washington, enabling her return to Pakistan and take over as a proxy leader, leaving Musharraf as President and Nawaz Sharif already pushed out in the wilderness. But some of her recent statements on Pakistan's 'strategic' issues were so out of line that, it is highly unlikely that, the country's military leadership will allow her return easily in any capacity.

From the current wave of events, it appears that, we are being taken for a very rough ride. Our religious zealots are horrible creatures devoid of brains. They are living-dead like Zombies, only too eager to be fooled around their own weaknesses in Faith. Benazir has proved no different either. She has failed to democratize her party, failed her family, her elders in clan and on top of all, her father, who preferred death, against any clemency deal with a military dictator.

Leaving ground realities and rationales aside, it is sure like daylight that, if Washington wants Benazir and Musharraf to play balls, they will play balls, with rest of the whole good for nothing political crowd not even knowing which side of their bread is buttered.



M.Saeed, Pakistan - 19 September, 2007

Return of Lady Godiva!

This time the horse has been presented by ? when she rides
in.Will the nation create a frenzy to meet her halfway or
demurely look the other way.

Khalid Rahim, Canada - 20 September, 2007

She is Persian with lovely Persian face that wants power most of all


OUT OF HUMOUR ABOUT WOMEN INCLUDING BB'S WANTING POWER MOST, ENJOY MY POEM FOR FUN AND FOR NO OFFENCE AGAINST ANY ONE.THE POEM GOES AS SUCH:

The democracy charter
BB can sack
She is eager for power
Won't even look back

And she won't look
Those things behind
She promised to partners
To her, were kind

Those promises and goodwill
And friendship deeds
They were when wanted
Now are dead needs

What all else think now
But no one dares
To stop running BB
From power, she cares

The army and generals
Them, you expect
They're needed most
With most respect

And I say facts
Which are so true
BB cares for power
Not me, not you

Pak's geo strategy
Is needed by all
Pak army is vital
For every body's call

Pak army is powerful
With so much best
It's needed by all
But most by west

And riches will pour in
With goodies and money
For all Pakistan
It will be sunny

And BB thinks
She's tall as tower
She can only gain
The second hand power

So, wait for future
Just wait for time
Pak military will be
Most fit at prime

BB may get power
She still will be
With army bosses
We all will see

Pak policy will be
As usually same
With BB in
Won't change the game



Anwar Mahmood, Canada



Posted by Anwar Mahmood, Canada


Anwar Mahmood, Canada - 20 September, 2007

BB, The Commander

BB in her art of living and thinking a rich fogeigner who can not manage the difficulties of a poorly nation. Even if she swears to be fair is the commander of a gang of plunderers.

Mohammad Ilyas, Pakistan - 23 September, 2007

MR. 10%

Is Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto coming with Mr. 10%, for more collection?

moiz, Pakistan - 23 September, 2007

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