The main opposition grouping is ratcheting up its rhetoric against the ruling party, while insisting that President Asif Ali Zardari was at the centre of the row between the executive and the judiciary.
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Nawaz Sharif on Thursday said that members of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) should realise that their party leadership is using its prime ministers as “sacrificial lambs” to cover up the president’s corruption.
“Should a man who has disrupted the whole democratic process and put the country at stake to conceal his misdeeds be placed at such a post?” asked Nawaz, referring to the “millions of dollars in Swiss banks allegedly taken as commissions and kickbacks by President Asif Ali Zardari”. “The PPP should not be proud of this.” He was speaking to the media after PML-N’s parliamentary committee meeting in Islamabad.
The PML-N chief said that sacrificing prime ministers and saying that none of the premiers from the PPP is going to comply with Supreme Court’s orders is an open confrontation with the judiciary which will result in irreparable friction between the country’s institutions.
“How long will the prime ministers be made sacrificial lambs? Why isn’t the $6 million brought here?” he asked, adding the graft case against President Zardari was at the heart of the row between the executive and the judiciary.
He also questioned as to why parliament had stood against the judiciary in the PM contempt case and not taken the right decision.
“They (PPP) said the Supreme Court’s decision was wrong but I say the Supreme Court has set precedence in Pakistan by taking such a decision.” Nawaz said that the government should actually be thanking the apex court for dealing with the issue within the parameters of the constitution and law — unlike in the past when martial law and other coercive measures were used to oust a government.
Responding to a question regarding deposed prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, Nawaz clarified that he had no personal resentment against Gilani but added sarcastically that the recently-disqualified premier should keep in mind that “looters and assistant looters could never become political martyrs — they actually become political orphans”.
Nawaz also listed the challenges facing the country that need urgent attention. The PML-N leader also confirmed Sardar Mehtab Abbasi’s candidacy for the prime minister’s slot.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 22nd, 2012.
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