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Musharraf`s Impeachment

08 August, 2008

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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.
  • Reader Comments:

    Leave President in Charge

    Respected President Pervez Musharraf is the best thing happened to Pakistan, I dont understand why some narrow minded people cant see that. He has given Pakistan the recognition and the stability that was so desperatly needed. These two polititions from PPP and PM (N) are working on there own personel interest while our president has always put Pakistan Interest first and us an opportunity to walk with our head held high. Please I want to make a Plea to people of Pakistan "Save Pakistan by saving President Musharraf".

    syed ali, United Arab Emirates - 08 August, 2008

    President Musharraf

    Dear Reader
    I was born and bred in the uk. I had my first trip to Pakistan after 19 years back in May. While I was there I must say I was very pleasantly suprised by what I had heard and seen. Pakistan is undergoing alot of development and investment. The people I spoke to gave credit to Musharaffs presidency. I heard nothing but praise for all the good work he was doing. I for one am writing to show my support to him. I am very much against impeachment against him.

    Sadeia Afzal-Ali, United Arab Emirates - 08 August, 2008

    Impeachments have its back ground in personal vandalism.
    All the charges have no ground and can be discarded easily by Supreme Court.
    Dismissing the parliament is the constitutional right of President and any attempts to stop him in doing so, fall under the obstruction of justice.

    Siddique, Pakistan - 08 August, 2008

    Impeaching Musharraf

    I do not hear Pakistani people are great fans of Musharraf or Zardai or Nawaz Sharif. But Pak people are rendered so abjectly helpless and powerless that every body there or outside thinks that it is shear waste of time even to think of it.

    The decision, one way or the other, will be made by those who have and are robbing the country,are indifferent to the common man's problems and hardships. For them revenge or counter revenge is the must for their dignity.

    At least the timing is very bad as Pakistan, even being the most preferred invitee to the world olympics being held in China,will be missed in China's very auspicious eventful celebrations.Already, we goofed when China's prime minister was supposed to do the opening ceremony of Gawader that China financed and built it for Pakistan, was cancelled for some reason in 2005.On that I saw my Chinese colligue engineer in Canada getting upset and I heard an Indian say that it was a good thing and Pakistan will be cut off from its only and only supporting friend that is China.

    Now we have the rulers who are selling out Pakistan to India.Paks won't mind giving their destiny into Indian hands if india treated Paks like America treats Canada.Indians have heavily financed and done world wide propaganda and evil work to create trouble in NWFP and Baluchistan.They are talking of worse in history genocide of Punjabis once NWFP and Baluchistan get engaged into inter-Pak and Nato killing.Nato and America won't do genocide,but Indians and some Afghans are hell bent to see that happen.

    What is happening now is that Pakistan is being surrundered to India to import any thing and every thing and to rob as much through commissions by the Indian wolves and Pak collaborators to severely punish Paks.All busses, chemicals, fuels, oil, food etc will be imported from India.Pakistan's second largest in the world coal reserves will be handed over to India's Ambani brothers to confiscate all the earnings minus some little fee to the ruling collaborators.Man,we write sympathy letters for Pakistan and we get all types of threats from the Indians and from collaborators rulers.Pakistan's pride intelligence is getting its feather clipped so Indian RAW can eat up Pakistan.And worse yet,our life line military is also in the process of getting marginalized.Who knows what will happen to our ultimate life line security of about 100 nuclear weapons.

    First,let us examine if the people,who are front runners,are themselves angels and perfect.I would'nt give my opinion on that,but the plight of the crushed Pakistani now is worse than ever with Forex reserves dropping from 15 billion dollars to 10 billion dollars in only eour months, more than 8000 hardship related suicides in Pakistan since the new government took office and people views are the facts every sensible Pak will go to form opinion.

    It is very sad to see our own people resigned to desparation about their own country.Yet, our rulers and leaders openly say that all problems are not as serious as taking revenge on Musharraf.

    Well, we thought that the notion of,"Either it will be his neck or my neck" died with Zia-Bhutto feud ended in bloody deaths of both.We thought forgiveness and tolerance of fellow Paks would be the trend.

    I really feel oppologistic on this issue and instead wish the nation gets on to development so that the common man can breathe as well.We have honestly almost doubled our remiitence to more of our relatives in pakistan. May be 8 billion dollars a year sent by millions of Paks will be humble contribution to our loved Paks.For heaven sake do not give away Paks precious coal reserves to India.Americans still return 40 percent money to Canadians and middle east oil countries after expenses on engineering, equipment fabrication, operations and production.A very un-kind userper like India will give few million dollars into the pockets of the collaborators and leave the Paks poor.Please read Pak Topix Forum yourself and find that Indians are talking of not only beggar slavery , but slaughter at the rate of 100000 a day of Paks.Our rulers already recived the tortured dead bodies of cricket fan Khalid Mahmood and others in return for pump and show return of the Indian real spies.

    If 8000 suicides in Pakistan in the past 4 months and grinding price hikes and common man's powerless hardships are non issues, then so is the impeachment voraciousness.

    To get rid of impeachment, should President Musharraf dissolve the assemblies?

    Like every shrewed player, Musharraf will play his cards as best as he can.we cannot advise one way or the other.

    Will President Musharraf get vote of confidence?

    Only the specific people in Pakistan can tell that.I won't view one way or the other.

    Will this impeachment prove better for the country`s future?

    Musharraf has ruled as long as Ayub Khan or Zia.His time may be over(?).But, do we have much confidence in the current coalition government.

    Anwar Mahmood, Pakistan - 08 August, 2008

    From NRO to Impeachment!

    The political game that US administration
    is playing in this drama; started with the
    NRO the mastermind of Rehman Malik
    and presented to those Vested Interests in Washington DC and Delhi
    by Hussain Haqqani. Until Musharraf is
    in the chair the 'green door' to A Q Khan's citadel cannot be penetrated.If
    only they could find a man who would open the doors for them. Just as the Neocons found GWB to help them with
    establishing the ''New world Order''? It
    would not be surprising that AAZ will
    oblige his mentors to achieve his way to Pakistan's Oval office. Who says that
    General's who assume power through PCO are not gullible? Two seats were not occupied in the Olympic stadium in Beijing. As they both have to run the Marathon in their own Capital. By the end of the day Who amongst them
    will claim Victory! Like the fools as some 'Ambitious General and Corrupt Politicians' are; The treasure chest falls
    into the hands of the One who placed
    the two in the ring.

    Khalid Rahim, Canada - 09 August, 2008

    Musharaf must quit

    Musharaf must quit and he must not be given any relief and must be presneted before terrorist court.

    Chaudri Munair, Pakistan - 09 August, 2008

    impeachment of Musharraf

    Here is the plan for Musharraf:

    -Disolve national parliament by using Section 58-2/b;
    -appoint someone papular
    person, a prime Minister;and
    -lock up Nawaz and Asif for the charges not yet dropped
    until they learn to
    respect democracy.

    This will give people the cofidence and will believe in him what he is doing.

    Believe you me, it will work.

    Raymond W.Durrani, Canada - 09 August, 2008

    in the present circumstances impeachment of the president is the only option left for democratic forces as he is adament in clinging to power and calling the my view musharraf and democracy are not synonomous and in order to give genuine democracy a chance he has to be removed from the scene.this is not to say that the present lot is ideal to put pakistan on the true democratic path but with musharraf out at least we can aspire to have a greater peoples participation in affairs of the state .Moreover i donot think that with todays scenario where we have greater public awareness owing to free media and a galvanized civil society,the corrupt political class can have their way fully.If we are firmly vigilant they will finally have to retreat thus paving way for a truly democratic order in which the institutions get gradually stronger and our culture of fascination for personalities fade out.After the fiasco and utterly failed governance of the last 9 years in particular and 60 years in general,we have to come out of deep slumber and rally around clean and selfless leaders and start putting our house in order lest it is all over for us as a nation.We owe this to our future generations.

    Hashmi Tajammul, Ireland - 09 August, 2008

    president's impeacment

    Pakistani people been unfortunate in the past and will remain unfortunte because they can not make difference between good and bad.there will never be as loyal and good president as Musarraf again in the history of Pakistan.present mafia government did not do any good thing for Pakistan except very bad economic and social chaos. Please people of Pakistan, for ur own sake, open your eyes. Long live musarraf

    A loyal Pakistani, Belarus - 10 August, 2008

    Pervez Mushaaraf and his Generals have to be on the trial for justice. For some people as well as Sadeia Afzal was borne in UK and passed just a few days in Pakistan is hard to understand what is going on in Pakistan and its neighbors. Economy development is one issue, but crimes took place are another issue. It is tow deferent paths separate from each other. If we credit him for economy development and cover his crime he committed then we are guilty too.

    Azad Khan Ahmadzai, Pakistan - 10 August, 2008

    Check in the Chess?

    • Would President Musharraf invoke article 58-2B to forestall his impeachment, and with what consequences?

    Musharraf is not in uniform support to fire the 58-2B missile. He can only forestall impeachment if he could garner enough courage and brute soldier instinct to counter the last minute attack with “bitter truth revenge fire”. But, he will immediately lose support of the US security cover outfits which had thrice saved him from suicide terror attacks. He might end up with a fate similar to Z.A. Bhutto who antagonized Kissinger with a threat to reveal some secrets of the US plans in Pakistan, on which Kissinger countered by telling Bhutto that, he would make a horrible example of him, leaving all diplomatic norms aside. At least, Musharraf is well aware of his odds and might not like to hasten his own end by being undiplomatic to such lethal limits of foolishness.

    • Will President Musharraf present himself before the assembly to get the vote of confidence from it, and with what results?

    This is a gravely perplexing question. Musharraf knows the mental capabilities of the members of assemblies that he himself declassified and allowed in, by setting aside the minimum educational requirement. To get a wining vote of confidence from such semi-literate lot of the members on an issue which has baffled even the best legal minds for a very long time, is something that he knows the results of, without taxing his mental faculties. Therefore, to expect sanity from these members in the vote of confidence is as good as expecting Musharraf to sign his own death warrant in the wake of hoes and cries of his own created and imported opponents.

    • 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.

    We should not forget that, the biggest power behind Musharraf is not uniform or 58-2B, but the “Check and Counter-check” wielding powers of the Grand Master of the game who plays several moves conceived and perfected in advance on super-computers. Therefore, being silent spectators, we should just wait and see what moves come from the Champion and pronounce final “check and defeat”. Remember not long ago Musharraf proudly predicted that, the final knock-out punch in the bout would come from the gloves that he wears.

    M.Saeed, Pakistan - 10 August, 2008


    What a funny way to pay a man who worked hard to stabilize the economy and held US on the trailing track in Afghanistan. President Musharraf done no harm to the nation of Pakistan but unfortunately public of Pakistan doesn't understand that enemies of Pakistan are back to ruin the country. Economy is down to a stage from where not easy to bring back to the level prior to 18th February 2008. President Musharraf is a very strong man and as a leader he is better equipped with the armaments he got in his jacket. He knows what politicians are trying to play with him but he will come clean as he done no harm to economy or to anyone around.There is nothing against him to prove where he is liable of any crime. Killing of BB should be down to the person who was interested to clear his way and it could be anyone's guess. I go along with Syed Ali of United Kingdom that "SAVE PAKISTAN BY SAVING PRESIDENT MUSHARRAF". I don't worry about President Musharraf as I do have a faith and believe firmly that he is a winner. God is with him but not with the rogues. Wish him success in his goals.

    Mohammad, United Arab Emirates - 10 August, 2008

    Lessons from a cesspool.

    The only lesson people of Pakistan will learn from this 'Impeachment' is that we
    live in a cesspool! Unless the people are
    awakened, they will drown in the murky
    waters; who will awaken them and let
    them out of this mess? ZARDARI and
    his gang! They have already sold their
    soul to the highest bidder. Sharifs can
    bring a change, provided they change
    their 'vision'. They have an opportunity
    to do the right thing,by burying the past and showing magnanimity to their
    opponents. Lastly Musharraf must clip
    his own wings by accepting his own
    mistakes that has caused great agony to thousands of families. But if we as
    mature citizens were to choose who is
    to be the President. Musharraf , Sharif or Zardari? Then it would be a blunder
    not to choose Musharraf. Why! He is not CORRUPT.

    Khalid Rahim, Pakistan - 10 August, 2008

    Long live the President!

    Whether you like it or not but fact remains that he we elected as President for five years by our previous NA. This means that he doesn't need to take vote of confidence from anyone!

    Second, President is still popular as you can see by the comments on this page.


    Imran Siddiqui, Canada - 10 August, 2008

    President Impeachment

    Impeachment of the president move is a gimmick. Politicians from both mainstream parties are not sincere to restore judges. Their past conduct is a great proof in this respect. Had they been sincere in their hearts and minds, they would have restored the deposed judges according to Muree declaration. They intentionally withdrew from that on one pretext or the other.

    Impeachment of president is not an easy affair, keeping in view integrity of our lawmakers who have record of felling prey to horse trading. Besides there are elements in both the major parties who at eleventh hour will not abide by the directions of their party bosses.

    There are evil minds as well in the society who will take this issue to the courts and seek status quo on the plea that charge sheet framed against the president is false in the light of SC verdict that legalized actions of the president.

    Therefore I shall request my friends that they should develop pressure on coalition government to restore judges first as they promised in the Muree declaration. Otherwise restoration of judges will become an unfulfilled dream.

    Gangly Khan
    Mandi Bahauddin

    Gangly Khan, Pakistan - 11 August, 2008


    Once upon a time a Lion King was sleeping peacefully under a canopy in a jungle. Finding the lion asleep, the cowardly animals like Jackals and Wolfs, birds and creeping bugs surrounded the lion king. Some of them dared to ride on him. The lion king feeling tickled by the movement woke up from his sleep. As soon as, he saw that congregation of animals and birds, he roared ferociously in rage, which echoed the jungle to hell. With in seconds, all animals and birds disappeared like cockroaches…The coalition and Musharraf opponents are no more than cockroaches and bugs creeping in the stadium bathrooms.

    SHAFIQ KHAN, Canada - 11 August, 2008


    we are in for another round of promises,deadlines, number-games etc.

    One thing that the impeachment resolution would immediately accomplish is giving legitimacy to the PCO judges' decision to validate the results of Musharraf's election.

    The articles 41 through 49 of Pakistani constitution deal with the office of the President.

    One cannot apply the article 27 which pertains to impeachment, without actually acknowledging the legitimacy of the President elected under article 41.

    For all practical purposes Zardari's move will benefit Musharraf but more than that would actually destroy whatever is left of the pro-judiciary moevement.

    Zardari has made a smart move by drawing Nawaz Sharif and lawyers into a legal black-hole, while providing cushion to Musharraf and above all restoring his credentials.

    Full marks to Zardari.

    Ali Zaidi, Pakistan - 11 August, 2008

    Pervez Musharrafs impeachement

    I think we should not get very excited about Pervez Musharraf's impeachement. First of all it is a long process--can take up to one month. Other than that, and more significantly, the ruling coalition has delayed the restoration of judiciray once again, an issue which is more important than Musharraf's impeachment. I believe there is a consensus among the army and civilian populist politicians, with the backing of the US, that judiciary in Pakistan will not be made independent. To achieve that aim, Musharraf can be sacrificed. He is a easy target now for everyone. It's crucial to see how lawyers react to all of this. There are now open divisions in their ranks (some eight deposed judges in Sindh agreed to take a fresh oath). Then PML Q and MQM won't let that happen that easily. PPP and PML N have a majority in NA (it can be debated if they have a two-third majority) but they are in a minority in the upper house of the Parliament, the Senate. It seems that the crisis in Pakistan is far from over.

    Imam Shamil, Georgia - 11 August, 2008

    Finally reached a decision to impeach dictator Musharraf

    It is heartening to know that the ruling coalition in Pakistan has finally reached a decision to impeach dictator Musharraf who has occupied Pakistan illegally and unconstitutionally since about 9 years. It is time to not only get rid of him but to make him accountable for all his crimes against the country and the people and also try him under Article 6 of the Constitution for high treason.

    People would have to continue their activism and keep their pressure on the rulers so that no one tries to sabotage the decision announced today in Islamabad.

    Aziz Narejo, United Kingdom - 11 August, 2008

    To Impeach or not to Impeach? That is not the question!

    There is a fierce debate going on in Pakistan whether the decision of the ruling coalition to impeach President Musharraf is really a decision to impeach him or to entrench him? The spanner in the works has come from Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan, who is the President of the Supreme Court Bar Association. He was the leader of the lawyers team that successfully pleaded the case of Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry before the Supreme Court that got him reinstated. He is in the USA and has said in an interview that the decision to 'impeach' is a conspiracy to switch priorities from 'restoration of the judges' to the 'impeachment of the President' and thus preclude both.

    I do not support this particular conspiracy theory. If there is any conspiracy, it is by Aitzaz Ahsan. Since he is not in the lead in the impeachment moves, he has no interest in it. Yet, it would be too much to accuse him of a conspiracy because that would require another party to conspire with. I believe it is merely a case of 'sour grapes'. However, since the parties of the APDM have also joined the Aitzaz Ahsan chorus, 'sour grapes' is not a credible rationale for their decrying of the impeachment moves. It is important to understand the motives of the movers of the impeachment motion, and also of those who are decrying it.
    General Musharraf was no different. He was himself the Army Chief and he did not tolerate a political stalwart as Prime Minister; Mr Jamali and Shaukat Aziz were handpicked by him and they both acted like a chief patwari who knew who appointed them. The entire purpose of the PCO, promulgated upon the military take over, is to eliminate any judge who might have integrity. This 'military methodology' worked for Ayub Khan, Yahya Khan, Zia ul Haq and Pervez Musharraf. But eight years appears to be the maximum time for which it works. Musharraf wanted to extend this period of time but failed. I have no doubt he will be impeached. He might even have the distinction of being the first army chief to be tried for treason under Article 6 of the Constitution.
    What we see now is Asif Zardari struggling to tighten his grip on power. He has own man as the Prime Minister and as the Chief Justice. The purpose of the impeachment move is to have his man as the President. He is eager to rein in the armed forces but they are institutionally strong. The attempt to place the ISI under operational and financial control of mafia boss Rehman Malik, backfired. The armed forces - despite corruption having seeped into higher ranks - still work as institutions i.e. they work by rules, and the law applies to all. But the Generals who get into political appointments learn quickly that the political class operates like Mafiosi where the only law is 'obey the boss-right or wrong'. They cannot last too long in political office because their comrades take note of their transformation, hold them in contempt, and oust them from their fraternity.
    Asif Zardari has chosen the Prime Minister well. Like every good patwari, Yousaf Raza Gilani, knows who is the boss. But the lawyers' moment, which is both unexpected and unprecedented, has made sure that Dogar led Supreme Court is still short of legitimacy. Asif Zardari has been ready to restore any number of judges who took a new oath; all he wants is that Mr Dogar stays as the Chief Justice. He has chosen to sidestep the issue and get his man into the Presidents House first. If he succeeded, he will soon be ousted himself. The country needs and wants the institutions of the state to provide a system of 'checks and balance'. The longer he takes trying in vain to keep his man as CJ and get his man into Presidency, the more severe becomes the meltdown of the economy.

    What Asif Zardari is trying to do was tried by every ruler of Pakistan since Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. They all, more or less, succeeded in putting their men in charge and made every institution of the state into a mafia. It was their effort to transform the military into a mafia, obeying their every whim, when they became unstuck. Asif Zardari has become unstuck so early for several reasons. He does not have the popularity, credibility or the charisma of his civil or military predecessors. His close colleagues are the likes of Rehman Malik who earned world renown in shady deals. The world has changed and so has Pakistan. The media is mediocre but it is free. Pakistan is in the eye of the storm because of geo-politics. It is no longer a place where cuts and commissions is all that the PM and other ministers have to negotiate.
    The doubts created by the APDM and Aitzaz notwithstanding, Asif Zardari can gain respect and regain stature if he was to announce that he would give one of the top jobs - the President or the Prime Minister – to PML(N). He would make the country ecstatic with joy if he surprised everybody and restored all the judges on the first day of the next session of the parliament – on 11 August.

    Usman Khalid, United Arab Emirates - 11 August, 2008

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