Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani is lobbying to keep a key defence role and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is considering the request, military and civilian officials told The Wall Street Journal (WSJ).
Kayani steps down as army chief next month after serving twice the normal three-year term for the position. He has reportedly asked for a further one or two years on the job, according to serving and retired military officials.
According to the WSJ report, Kayani is prepared to “accept a revamped Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee job, currently a largely ceremonial post that would be given more authority, or to become defence adviser to the government.”
The report further cited officials saying that he could also be made ambassador to the US.
A military source told WSJ that “Kayani wants authority over military appointments and troop movement added to the position.”
“Kayani is using his office to say that he’s the guy who can control North Waziristan, he’s the one who can handle what is happening with India,” the report quoted a retired army officer as saying.
“With all this going on, he’s saying now is not the time for a change of leadership.”