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 LFO is a primary national issue: says Nadeem Yousaf

 

 Those who contend that the opposition is giving undue importance to the issue of Legal Framework Order (LFO) are at fault because LFO is a primary national issue, which should be resolved amicably in the parliament according to the given procedure in the constitution, said Mr. Nadeem Yousaf, Chief Organizer of Pakistan Social Justice group. He says that it is positive that the government and opposition are on the negotiating table; whether or not negotiations succeeds very much depends upon the government attitude towards the core clauses of the LFO. If negotiations fails and the government tries to induct LFO in the constitution through back door, it would create chaos in the country. General Musharraf, Prime Minister Jamali and other key members of the government must understand that LFO is not a secondary problem; rather it is a key problem. Mr. Yousaf added, “we have been making a joke with the constitution and laws of the country on the name of “necessity of the time” for the last 56 years, consequently, condition of the country has deteriorated; and unfortunately corruption is teaching its heights”. In the new century, we should leave habit of fooling people and must understand that state building can only be done when we follow the system, which is adopted through following the process. Mr. Yousaf does not agree that elections 2002 are result of the LFO. He says that we should remember that elections are the result of the order of the Supreme Court in which Musharraf military government was accepted only for 3 years under the doctrine of necessity. The apex court restricted the military government to make fundamental changes in the constitution whereas LFO changes nature of the constitution and negates the decision.

 

Mr Yousaf said that those people who have been giving statements in favor of LFO, most of them are those who have supported all governments in the past provided they got their share in power. He asked that those who are arguing in favor of “President in Uniform”, would they give any guarantee that Gen. Musharraf would not bring any kind of “Right Framework Order (RFO) to maintain his power whenever his power at stake? He said that all military government employed the same tactics in the Past and Musharraf’s government is no different to it. It is strange that Military rulers would like to rule themselves for 8-10 years but could not tolerate civilians’ government more than 3 years. Military rulers criticized civil rulers such as Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif’s constitutional amendments that they were made to strengthen their rule but ignore their own behavior and attitudes towards the constitution and law of the country. It is true that Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif’s proposed amendments were passed without any problem because they have two-third majority in the parliament, it happens in all democracies where opposition could not get enough public support; but what is more important that they had followed the constitutional process. If these amendments were not in the interest of the country, we should accuse all member of parliaments who casted their vote in favor of those amendments. Mr. Yousaf added, we should remember that many members of the existing parliament are opposing the same amendments, which they have voted for in the last parliament. Gen. Musharraf reintroduced in LFO the same power of president, which Zia-ul-Haq inducted and parliament annulled unanimously. It is sad that the military regimes tampered the unanimously accepted constitution to keep power. Generals must understand that it is political injustice to people of this country that they join army as a public servant and wants to sit at the strategic apex of the country. If today military bureaucracy wants share in running the government, tomorrow civil bureaucracy can also demand the same. When generals joined the army they were promised career in the army and not in politics. Gen. Musharraf asserts that his uniform is essential for the security of the country and it should be left on his discretion when he would choose to remove it. The fact is security of the country is not dependent on one person, the lesson we have learnt from Iraq. In addition, if it is left on his discretion, it is quite possible he might consider forever that keeping uniform is essential to remain in power.

 The Chief Organizer of PSJG, Mr. Yousaf said that if we really want to learn lesson from Afghanistan and Iraq incidents, we should empower democratic institutions. The lesson of Iraqi situation is that neither presidential referendum nor controlled democracy is a substitute of genuine democracy. The lesson of the recent history is that strengthening institution is more important than strengthening a person; where individual become more important, nation faces disasters.

 

 

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