Pakistan PM to announce top military appointments in November



ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan’s Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid has announced the appointment date of top military chiefs of Pakistan on November 28.

Minister for Information and Broadcasting Pervaiz Rashid has said that appointment of army chief is prerogative of the prime minister under the Constitution and he will name new army chief on November 28, adding that blocking the Nato supply does not fall within the constitutional jurisdiction of a chief minister.

The minister said that Parvez Khatak was a sensible man and knew about his constitutional obligations very well.

Talking to parliamentary reporters in Islamabad, he said the government did not want to disturb the authority of the incumbent COAS in the prevailing circumstances by naming new army chief, whose appointment would be made at an appropriate time.

Regarding Pervez Musharraf, the minister said the government had placed his name on the Exit Control List (ECL) because investigations regarding Article 6 were pending and he had been just granted bail.

Replying to a question about talks with Taliban, Pervaiz Rashid said the government had been keeping the process alive as no one was in the favour of killings and bloodshed.

He said dialogue was a process between the government and the Taliban, and drones cannot affect this process. He added that the government was waiting for a concrete statement from the Taliban about the talks.

The minister informed that Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan would take parliament into confidence on the issue of talks. On Nato supplies, he hoped Khyber-Pakhtunkhawa government would not exceed its prescribed limits. He urged PTI Chairman Imran Khan to ensure the security of polio workers.

He termed the news reports about Pakistan’s nuclear program as baseless and misleading saying that Pakistan completed its nuclear programme with its own human and financial resources.

He said the government has been working hard to mitigate energy crisis and overall law and order situation in the country from the first day. He said positive results have started emerging. He said 1700 MW electricity has been added to the national grid system in five months.

Perviaz Rashid said the Article 6 case against Musharraf was pending and investigations were underway. “If we would have started proceedings against Mushararf immediately after being elected, everyone would have called it revenge.”

He said there was no deadlock on local bodies elections in Punjab and government would abide by the court’s decision. He said government respects courts and all cases have to be decided by them. He said government’s role is to assist the courts, rather interfering in their matters.

The information minister said the government had received reports of the Taliban refusing to hold talks via media. “We will wait to see if the other side releases a clarification or makes some changes to their resolve.”

According to the information minister, talks were between the government and Taliban and a third party could not damage the process by conducting an attack. “The drone attack cannot cause damage to the dialogue process.”

He said there was no deadlock on the matter of local bodies elections, adding that the decision of the Supreme Court over the matter of LB polls would be followed. Replying a question he said that the allegations being leveled against the Pakistani nuclear program were baseless, adding that Pakistan was running nuclear program with its own resources. He said that the NAB is present for curbing corruption in country, adding that it was the responsibility of the government to provide evidence in courts.

Earlier, talking about the welfare of parliamentary reporters, he said all required resources will be provided to journalists covering the parliamentary proceedings. He assured soon private media will also be allowed to broadcast the parliamentary proceedings. He said names of Wage Board members have been finalized and soon it will be implemented.