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Musharraf says he will continue to be in uniform

Musharraf will continue to be Pak's President and retain his post as the army chief even after general elections due in 2007.

india Updated: Jan 31, 2006 14:27 IST

Pervez Musharraf will continue to be Pakistan's President and retain his post as the army chief even after the next general elections due in 2007.

Despite opposition from mainstream political parties and reservations expressed by Commonwealth, Musharraf will continue to hold the two posts.

This was announced by pro-Musharraf Chief Minister of the eastern Punjab province, Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi, who said: "Let there be no misunderstanding on this issue. The assemblies will elect him president for a second term as he has taken the correct decisions in the interests of the country and its people."

Elahi, the brother of ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Q, (PML-Q) President Choudhary Shujat Hussain, said he was confident that Musharraf will get a second term as president after the general elections.

Whether the general elections were held in 2007 or 2008 depended on the political situation, he said in an address to a public gathering after laying the foundation stone for a college in Rawalpindi on Monday, adding "Whatever, the Punjab stands with the president."

Elahi's comments were seen as a beginning of an orchestrated campaign by pro-Musharraf politicians to ask the President to retain dual offices.

Musharraf, whose election through referendum as President was ratified by National and three provincial assemblies, was due for re-election after 2007 general elections.

In his recent interviews, Musharraf sounded non-committal about quitting the influential post of Army Chief which he had committed to quit by 2004 but went back on his word asserting it was required to continue the war on terror.

First Published: Jan 31, 2006 14:27 IST