LONDON: Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani said on Tuesday that he would exhaust all means to have a fair trial and would not be coerced into a move out of office through unconstitutional means.
“I have no yearning to stick to power, but I will take it to finality and exhaust all avenues,” Gilani told a team of journalists as they accompanied him to the United Kingdom on a five-day visit.
He said the Constitution has explicitly spelt out ways to remove a Prime Minister and no one can force him out. The Supreme Court on Monday issued a detailed verdict of Gilani’s sentencing for being found guilty of contempt of court. Gilani, and his legal counsel are yet to file an appeal against that sentence.
When was asked about his stance on the issue of non-implementation of the Supreme Court’s order, for which he was subsequently found guilty and convicted for contempt, Gilani said all his decisions were taken in line with the Constitution. He said that as per his understanding. under Article 248 (1), President enjoyed complete immunity and he only did what he thought was the right thing.
“I took all decisions to the best of my abilities and in line with the rules and procedures, and in good faith,” he said, before adding, “I am proud that I fought for the constitution of Pakistan.”
Commending the support his government has received, and faith reposed in his stewardship of the Prime Minister’s office, said his coalition government enjoyed a two-thirds majority and its partners have stood by it through thick and thin. “Why should I fear those who are against the Constitution,” he stated.
Explaining the process, he said that still reserves the right to appeal the detailed judgment. After the judgment is released, the matter of his disqualification would be presented to the Speaker of National Assembly and finally decided before the Chief Election Commissioner.
“But we must also see what happens to the decision taken by the Election Commission against Waheeda Shah, who was disqualified, but the Sindh High Court stayed the decision,” the Prime Minister said, hinting at another possibility in the saga.