Pakistan presidential vote date set

Coalition is yet to decide on who would replace Musharraf and the issue of reinstatement of sacked judges.

    Asif Ali Zardari [left], is proposed to be Musharraf's possible successor [AFP]

    Meanwhile, Pakistan's ruling coalition is due to hold a make-or-break meeting on Friday.

    They are expected to decide on who would replace Musharraf and the reinstatement of judges sacked by the general last year.

    While the Pakistan People's Party and Pakistan Muslim League-N party, which lead the coalition, were able to agree on impeachment charges that led to Musharraf's resignation on Monday, they have so far been unable to agree on these two issues.

    Nawaz Sharif, the PML-N leader, has been pressing for the immediate reinstatement of the sacked judges and has threatened to quit the alliance.

    Raja Assad Hameed, a special correspondent for the Pakistani newspaper The Nation, told Al Jazeera that if there is no progress in Friday's talks, the coalition could fall apart.

    "The deadline for the restoration of judges expires today, but what appears to be the case is that the ruling coalition has so far failed in reaching a consensus for restoring the judges who were sent home by Pervez Musharraf.

    "There is rallying support behind Pakistan People's Party chairman Asif Ali Sardar, to be the presidential candidate, [all three key parties are supportive of his nomination.]

    "Nawaz Sharif has been distanting himself from nominating Zardari and he has been saying that ... somebody [less] political and controversial [should be nominated by the ruling coalition instead] so that he could emerge as the symbol of the federation and president of Pakistan."

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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