LAHORE -Gen Pervez Musharraf will keep visiting the country whenever he feels necessary and all cases against him will ultimately be wrapped up, says Ahmed Raza Kasuri, chief coordinator of the All Pakistan Muslim League, headed by the former president.
Talking to The Nation yesterday, Mr Kasuri denied that the former president had gone to UAE as a result of any deal with the government.
“I have been misquoted,” said the senior lawyer when asked about the deal which an English language newspaper quoted him as saying had paved the way for departure abroad of Gen Musharraf.
He said it was true that shortly before leaving for Dubai the former president had talked to him over the phone. However, he said, there was no mention of any deal.
Some people, the senior lawyers said, are talking of a deal between Musharraf and the government because Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif himself had left the country in December 2000 as a result of a Saudi-brokered deal. He claimed that he has with him a certified copy of the agreement, under which the Sharif family had agreed to stay out of the country for ten years.
Mr Sharif had returned to Pakistan after staying in Saudi Arabia for seven years, when situation in the country witnessed a major change because of his staunch rival Benazir Bhutto’s comeback. Gen Musharraf was in power at the time and the Saudi authorities had told him in clear terms that after the return of the PPP chairperson they could not force Mr Sharif to stay in the kingdom any more.
Gen Musharraf faces a number of cases, including one of high treason which is scheduled to come up for hearing on March 31.
Mr Kasuri said Gen Musharraf was not carrying out any political activity in Dubai. In fact, he said, people who called on him at his Dubai residence had come to inquire after him.
“Had there been any party meeting in Dubai, being the chief coordinator I too should have been there,” argued Mr Kasuri.
He insisted that all cases against Gen Musharraf would first go on the backburner and then would be wound up.
Mr Kasuri recalled that he had been saying this for the past couple of years that all cases against the former president were politically-motivated and would collapse like a house of cards. According to him the government was not in a position to pursue those cases any more.
Asked if he was in contact with the former president after his landing in Dubai, the senior lawyer answered in the negative. However, he said, people who meet Gen Musharraf keep him (Kasuri) posted about his health.
He said medical tests of the former president would be started pretty soon and in the light of their results he would be given medical treatment.
About the backbone problem Gen Musharraf was suffering from, Mr Kasuri said it was specific to bodybuilders and commandos. This problem, he said, always cropped up in old age.
About the PPP’s criticism of the government for allowing Gen Musharraf to go abroad, Mr Kasuri said it was a belated reaction. “They should have come up with this reaction at least a fortnight ago.”