In turnaround from her earlier stand, former Pakistan Premier Benazir Bhutto has said it is still possible for her to work with President Pervez Musharraf in future if the January 8 Parliamentary polls are held in a free and fair manner.
Bhutto has been demanding a neutral caretaker set up as part of the electoral arrangements and also more transparency in the workings of the Election Commission of Pakistan. The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairperson, who had previously vowed not to work in any future dispensation under President Musharraf, said she might still find it possible to cooperate with the President but this will depend on what happens in the general election.
“It’s very difficult to say anything on this matter at this stage,” she said. “A lot will depend on the elections themselves and what the mood of the people is following the elections, because if the elections are rigged, it’s going to put Musharraf on a confrontation course with the opposition parties,” said Bhutto, who has repeatedly claimed that the ruling PML-Q will rig the polls. The government has denied this.
She said Musharraf could still surprise people by conducting an honest election though she believed that is a “remote possibility”. “At the moment the situation is not conducive to fair elections within Pakistan,” she said.