Coalition has support of 350 MPs: Zardari
* PPP co-chairman says he had asked Musharraf to resign two months ago
* Army will not interfere
* President’s move to cancel China visit was ‘irresponsible’
Daily Times, August 10, 2008
ISLAMABAD: About 350 parliamentarians will support the ruling coalition’s move to impeach President Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari told Balochistan ministers and parliamentary leaders late on Friday.
On Saturday, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shahbaz Sharif met Zardari and discussed the progress on ruling coalition’s decision to impeach the president announced in a press conference on Thursday.
A source privy to the meeting told Daily Times they talked about opposition legislators who had assured the government of support. “They were confident they had more than 300 votes,” he added.
Chaudhry Nisar and Ishaq Dar assisted Shahbaz, and Raza Rabbani and Farooq Naik accompanied Zardari.
Two months ago: In an interview with a private TV channel also aired on Saturday, Zardari said he had advised President Musharraf to resign two months ago.
“Through a common friend, General Durrani, I had advised President Musharraf to resign two months ago. But the president did not reply.”
“I don’t want to insult any institution,” he said, however. “My top priority is transition to democracy.”
Army: He said the army would act in line with the constitution, and that it would not interfere with the impeachment process.
Zardari said he was “110 percent sure” of success in the impeachment move.
He urged members of the opposition Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) to vote against the president and that talks were underway with the Muttahida Qaumi Movement. “I have sent someone to Altaf Hussain,” he said.
China: Zardari said Musharraf’s move to cancel his visit to China was “irresponsible behaviour”, because the prime minister had to leave for China in his place.
The PPP co-chairman said all the judges sacked on November 3, 2007 would be reinstated.
He said Aitzaz Ahsan was a PPP member and that he respected Aitzaz’s stance as the president of the Supreme Court Bar Association. staff report/online
Also see:Coalition move gathers momentum: President’s impeachment - Dawn
For an alternate assessment, see
Musharraf clings on in the face of impeachment - Sunday Herald