Insisting he has "no differences" with President Asif Ali Zardari, Pakistan Premier Yousuf Raza Gilani has said they were united on their party's manifesto, including on repealing of the controversial constitutional amendment that gives sweeping powers to the presidency.
"As far as the President is concerned, we belong to the same party (Pakistan People's Party) and there are no differences (between us)," Gilani said in Karachi. Maintaining that the PPP was clear on the issue of revoking the 17th amendment to the Constitution, that gives the President sweeping powers, he said the party will support it if it is introduced in Parliament with consensus.
"The PPP's stand on the issue (of 17th amendment) is that if effort is made to bring a bill in this regard with consensus, it will support it," he said. Former premier Nawaz Sharif's PML-N has said it would be moving a bill in the next National Assembly session starting tomorrow, seeking to revoke the 17th amendment that gives the President powers to dissolve the National Assembly and dismiss the prime minister subject to the Supreme Court's approval. The amendment was passed in December 2003, during the Pervez Musharraf regime.
Recent reports in the local media suggested that tensions have emerged between Zardari and Gilani over the sacking of National Security Advisor Mahmud Ali Durrani and claimed the Premier was unhappy about presidency's direct involvement in the running of the government.