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Gilani rejects opposition's early call for polls


January 21, 2012 - Islamabad

Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has turned down demands of the opposition to hold early election, saying that polls would be held at their proper time.

"The government would complete the five-year mandate given to it by the people. We will face the opposition on all fronts including elections since we have come to power through the mandate of the masses," The Nation quoted Gilani, as saying.

Earlier, Pakistan's Supreme Court issued a contempt notice to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani on Monday and asked him to appear before it on January 19th over the same issue. Gilani is the second Prime Minister of Pakistan to be issued a contempt notice by the country's apex court.

The Supreme Court had earlier directed President Asif Ali Zardari, Gilani and Chairman of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Fasih Bokhari to submit their replies in the NRO implementation case. The apex court further requested the authorities to present details on the progress in the implementation of its verdict on the same issue.

The apex court warned Zardari and Gilani of disqualification for upto 10 years for defying the implementation of the National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) verdict. After Gilani failed to appear before the court this month, Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, heading a five-judge bench, called him a "sagacious" person as he defied the court orders in the NRO case.

The court had also threatened to disqualify both Zardari and Gilani and the law minister. The bench noted that the president"s interview and the prime minister's speeches reflected that their loyalty towards their party was above their oath to protect the Constitution. A similar violation of the oath had been committed by the president and the law minister, the bench said.

Gilani was criticised by many, including his major opponents over the NRO and the Memo Gate scandal.

Former Pakistan cricketer-turned politician Imran Khan has said that time is running out for the government headed by the PPP under the leadership Gilani and Zardari.

"Early election is the only option now. The government must resign," Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan had said.

Gilani, however, boasted that his was the only government in history surviving without any support, adding: "The only stable position rests with Allah... All my actions are in compliance with the constitution and accord to the rule of law."

ANI

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