As the Supreme Court grappled with a slew of petitions challenging his dual office, Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf is all set to file nomination on Thursday to seek re-election in uniform amid the opposition's failure to unite over their plans to quit from the assemblies.
After signing his nomination papers on Wednesday with firm backing from ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Q, Musharraf has formally launched his poll campaign in Balochistan where the PML-Q along with Islamist Muthahida Majlis-e-Amal is in power.
The electoral college for the Presidential election, to be held on October 6, consisted of members of parliament -- made up of national assembly and senate -- and four provincial assemblies. The PML-Q and its allies have a majority in senate and all the assemblies except in North West Frontier Province.
Chairman of the Senate, Mian Muhammad Sumorro and the speaker of the National Assembly, Amir Hussain, were fielded as "covering" (dummy) candidates for Musharraf, not his wife Sehba as earlier reports had suggested.
Musharraf met a cross-section of Balochistan provincial assembly legislators on Tuesday, prominent among whom were the members of the Jambhuri Watan Party (JWP) founded by the slain Baloch nationalist leader Nawab Akbar Bugti, who was killed in an encounter with the Pakistan army last year.
In the course of the next few days, he was expected to interact with lawmakers from Punjab and Sindh.
Musharraf appeared to have no problem in mustering majority as he was elected by the same assemblies in 2002, but the biggest challenge may come from the apex court which is hearing petitions questioning his dual offices, the legality of his re-election despite being army chief.