5 December 2023
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LAHORE: Former federal minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Fawad Chaudhry has asserted that the general elections were more important than the appointment of new army chief, ARY News reported on Saturday.

Speaking to journalists in Lahore, the PTI leader said that Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) were making the process of the next army chief’s appointment “controversial”.

He noted that appointments in institutions should be implemented in a constitutional manner, blaming the PML-N and PPP for making them controversial. He said it was necessary to “preserve and protect” the country’s institutions.

“We have a clear policy that we do not want bloodshed. Women and children also participate in our protest,” he said, adding that his party wants constitutional change in the country.

Fawad Chaudhry further said that political stability can only be witnessed after ‘free and fair’ elections and not after a new army chief is appointed.

Earlier in the day, former prime minister and PTI Chairman Imran Khan said he does not want to appoint Chief of Army Staff (COAS), reiterating that the army chief should be appointed on merit.

In a televised address to long march protestors in Lala Musa, the former premier noted that allegations were levelled against him for making the appointment of army chief controversial.

Imran Khan also criticised Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and other Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) bigwigs for holding a meeting in London to make the important decision about the army chief’s appointment.

“The important decisions of the country were taken abroad and by those who have looted Pakistan for the last 30 years,” he said, adding that he does not want a NAB chief, a judge or an army chief of his choice as he wants “the best people on the basis of merit”.

It is pertinent to mention here that Defence Minister Khawaja Asif confirmed that consultations were held on the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) appointment in the meeting between Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif.

He said on Twitter that speculations were being made that the decision of the COAS appointment was taken in the Nawaz-Shehbaz meeting in London. He confirmed that consultations were held on the COAS appointment, however, the decision was not taken yet.


Asif said that the decision for the COAS appointment will be taken after consultation under the constitutional process.

Abdul Gh Lone