Govt snubs Imran’s COAS extension proposal

Asif says PTI chief making process of army chief’s appointment controversial under ‘conspiracy'


Rizwan Gilzai September 13, 2022

ISLAMABAD:

 

The government on Tuesday rejected PTI chairman and deposed premier Imran Khan's proposal that the retirement of current Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa should be deferred until fresh general polls were called and a new regime was elected.

Defence Minister Khawaja Asif said that the discussion on the appointment of the army chief was “premature”.

Taking to Twitter, the minister wrote that Imran had fallen so much in his lust for power that he was linking the appointment of the army chief to the elections and politics.

Asif added that the current government would make a decision about this responsibility at the appointed time keeping in mind the best traditions of the Constitution and the institution.

Read: Never wanted to bring in COAS of my choice: Imran

“Important national decisions are not subject to political interests,” he said.
Speaking to a private TV news channel, Asif claimed that the PTI chief was making the process of the army chief’s appointment controversial under a “conspiracy”.

The minister added that the retirement of the incumbent army chief was still two and a half months away.

Asif further maintained that it was not in the interest of the country to talk about the matter at this time.

He added that it was also not in the interest of the military to drag its head, who was responsible for the defence of the country, into politics.

The minister further claimed that on one hand, the PTI chairman was targeting the establishment and on the other, he was also willing to open the doors of dialogue with it.

“Imran Khan wants to get power at all costs. it shows his mental and political backwardness,” Asif added.
Separately, talking to journalists in Islamabad, the PTI chief reiterated his call for new elections.

He added that the extension of the army chief's tenure was subject to the date and announcement of immediate elections.

He maintained that a few people had put the country's security at stake for their own interests.

Read: President Alvi distances himself from Imran's COAS statement

“It is also possible that I will disclose the names of all those people,” he said.
Imran claimed that he had always spoken of Pakistan and he was with the institution which stood with the country's interests.

The PTI chief said even today he insisted that no organisation could run without merit.

“The army is strong because its merit system is better,” he added.

The former prime minister said that the PTI had governments in the provinces but lacked “boots”, apparently referring to the security establishment.
He added there could be no work until “boots” were “used from behind”.

The PTI chief maintained that his call for protests would not exceed the month of September.

“They [current rulers] can’t understand how to face my inswinging yorker,” he quipped.

Imran said he had only suggested that the appointment of the army chief should be based on merit, but he did not understand why the military’s media wing issued a statement in response.

The PTI chief said he had checked the temperature of the nation by holding rallies for five consecutive months and it was just below the boiling point.

“I am telling everyone today that they are pushing me against the wall, where I will have no choice but to give the call [for protests],” he warned.

Imran claimed he did not fear being jailed, in fact he had even compiled his books that he would read in prison.

The PTI chairman said he was not in favour of dragging the new elections till March next year.

“This ‘lame’ government is nothing without the establishment. I don’t want anyone to harm the country under the guise of the establishment,” he added.
The ex-premier said it was very important that the appointment of judges was also based on merit.

“The judiciary should create a merit-based mechanism for the appointment of judges,” he added.

Imran further claimed there was no merit system in the PML-N and PPP.

“What is [PML-N Vice President] Maryam Nawaz's competition with [senior party leader] Chaudhry Nisar?” he asked. He added that Nisar's entire political experience was left aside and the party was handed over to Maryam.

COMMENTS (1)

Ali Nasir Chuadhry | 2 months ago | Reply

My dear Mr.Imran you have claimed that you are one of the top international leadership .sir may I dare to aske top leadership is habitual in U TURN.PLEASE MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS DONT WORRY ABOUT MARYAM OR CH.NISAR.

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