Pakistan Peoples Party Co-chairperson Asif Ali Zardari has said that the attempt by ‘certain quarters’ to seek the army’s role in accountability and other national affairs is inappropriate.
“Expecting the army’s role in political matters, accountability and other national issues is not fitting. Eternal sacrifices of the army should not be wasted due to political differences and opportunism,” Zardari said in a statement on Tuesday.
Terming army chief General Raheel Sharif’s decision to refuse an extension in service as ‘premature’, he said the decision could turn Pakistanis’ hopes into despair and jeopardise the fight against terrorism.
“At this critical juncture, continuation of the army leadership is necessary to stem the tide of terrorism. And when the time comes, the political leadership must make a decision taking into account national interest and security situation,” he added.
The PPP co-chairperson stressed that the nation should uproot the evil of terrorism with close collaboration between political and military forces. “The nation and political forces must unite and stand shoulder to shoulder with the armed forces to root out the menace of terrorism from the country.”
Zardari said his party stood with Pakistan Army. Pakistan is facing myriad of challenges as criminal gangs and separatists are hatching conspiracies to destabilise the country with the help of their foreign handlers, he said.
He said the security situation had worsened in the aftermath of the December 16, 2014 Taliban rampage at Peshawar’s Army Public School, “but due to the military operation, we have made significant gains in the fight against terror”.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 24th, 2016.