Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain has said that a corrupt system and Pakistan cannot go together. “We are against corruption. I have no differences with President Asif Zardari. The rumours about my health are totally wrong. I am hale and hearty,” the Muttahida chief said in Express News programme ‘Point-Blank’ hosted by Mubashir Luqman.
Altaf Hussain said “we want a new system under which everyone including politicians, judges and generals are held to account.”
Meanwhile, while talking to Geo TV, Altaf Hussain said that the Supreme Court under Article 190 of the Constitution could order Army, Rangers and police to act against the corrupt people.
He said the MQM is democratic party. “I have been waging democratic struggle for the past 32 years. How can I invite Martial Law? I never made a demand for imposing Martial Law in my speech. Even if martial law is imposed, the MQM will not support it,” he declared.
He said feudals have been under the patronage of generals for the past 63 years. The feudal breached embankments to save their lands, he added.
He said under every martial law, the plight of the public worsened and the situation in Balochistan deteriorated.
He said the flood survivors should come out and seize the palaces and lands of the feudal lords; the people living out in the open should be lodged in these palaces.
He said the patriotic generals must support the people. If the current government asks the army to annex the land of those who have breached embankments, “then I will support the government”. He said even if Nawaz Sharif does this, “I will support him also”.
He said we (the MQM) can quit the government. Whenever the party will ask, we will quit the government.
“If the honest generals of Pakistan Army did not summon up courage, the rest of Pakistan might face the prospect of dismemberment,” he said.
The MQM chief called for a “government of the honest” which should include patriotic generals, judges and honest politicians. A procedure for change of government is set out in the Constitution.
He said all those accusing me of martial law are in fact themselves products of martial laws. “I was handed down a flogging sentence during Ziaul Haq’s martial law, but I did not write a letter of apology,” he said.
Altaf Hussain said that we trusted the promises of every government but none kept those promises. He said by selling off property of big thieves and plunderers, the income should be deposited in the national treasury. “We will bring back the looted wealth from foreign shores.”
“Give MQM the government and we will hang such people,” he said.
He said another way is that the present government should stay, but the army support the people and the two hold accountability of the thieves and plunderers. The army can take action against the corrupt without dislodging the government.
Altaf Hussain said you don’t talk about the bigwigs of Punjab. How foreign accounts vanished overnight…how many mills they own now…it’s wrong to target Zardari only. I have no personal differences with President Zardari.
He said Bhutto did not indulge in corruption but the prominent people of the clan did indulge in corruption. Be it Muslim League or Nawaz Sharif, people keep coming to power by changing faces. “the government is not of much importance to us,” he declared.
He said the people who grew up in the lap of martial law are accusing me of supporting martial law. “I am opposed to martial law even today”. The ISI, IB and the corruption people in the army will also be subjected to accountability. “This is why the Establishment did not like me. But now patriotic generals will consider my words,” he said.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 29th, 2010.