Musharraf still hopes PPP won't support restoration of Iftikhar Chowdhary: Aide

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Islamabad, Mar 14 : One of the close aides of Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf has said that he (Musharraf) still hopes that the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) would support him over the issue of restoration of judges, particularly ex-CJ Iftikhar Chowdhary, despite the fact that the party inked the Murree Accord with the PML-N last Sunday.

The Accord contains a clause calling for restoration of Supreme Court judges, including Justice Iftikhar Chowdhary, which is considered contrary to Musharraf's interests. Notably Musharraf had suspended Justice Iftikhar last November, just before he was supposed to declare his Presidency illegal.

According to the aide, Musharraf still bets that the PPP will support his point of view on the judges' issue. "Though PPP and PML (N) both have jointly issued the Murree Declaration, mainly focusing on the judges issue, the president still hopes PPP will support his point of view on the judges issue," the Daily Times quoted him as saying

The unidentified aide said that though both the parties had agreed upon the issue of restoration of judges, PPP was yet not convinced over the issue and was focused on freedom of judiciary, providing a ray of hope to Musharraf.

According to the paper, a member of the president's legal team said that since the PPP was a beneficiary of the present judiciary vis a vis the implementation of the National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO), it won't restore Iftikhar Chaudhry as chief justice.

The aide said that though Musharraf's legal team had already given their opinion about approaching the SC in case of a parliamentary resolution, they had also told the President that they would give go ahead for approaching the apex court after going through the draft of the parliamentary resolution.

Musharraf's legal advisors were of the opinion that parliament would not touch the extra-constitutional actions taken on Nov 3, 2007 keeping the present judiciary intact.

ANI

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