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Aitzaz Ahsan Boycotts Elections

Free Aitzaz AhsanToday the legal community is celebrating with the news that Aitzaz Ahsan has finally decided to boycott the elections, in effect culminating in a full and total boycott by the legal community in Pakistan, barring those lap-dogs hungry for power. Aitzaz Ahsan had initially written in a letter to the Bar Council outlining his strategy for the upcoming elections in which he made it clear that if the political parties did not join together for a full and complete boycott, then lawyers must fight the elections and make a fuss in the parliament to restore the judiciary. His plan personally outlined some good strategy but the Bar council on the other hand urged its lawyers to boycott these sham elections. Finally today Aitzaz Ahsan conceded to these demands and decided to boycott. I share with you the press release issued by the offices of Mr. Aitizaz Ahsan today

PRESS RELEASE issued from the offices of AITZAZ AHSAN & ASSOCIATES on December 12, 2007

President Supreme Court Bar Association and Senior Advocate Supreme Court of Pakistan Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan today instructed his advocates to appear before the Returning Officer withdraw his nomination papers filed by him to contest the forthcoming elections to the National Assembly. Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan had filed his nomination papers in constituency No. NA 124, Lahore as a candidate of the Pakistan Peoples Party.

The PPP leadership has been informed of the decision.

Since he is under detention it is not possible for Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan to personally appear before the Returning Officer to withdraw his papers. Advocates Shaukat Ali Javed and Mian Tariq Hassan have therefore been authorized in writing by Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan to take the nomination papers back.

While instructing the withdrawal of the nomination papers Mr.Aitzaz Ahsan said that although he believed victory in his elections was quite certain he was exercising the option to stand with the community of lawyers that had carried on a heroic struggle for the restoration of the judiciary and the supremacy of the Constitution. The cause of the lawyers was a higher objective than his own personal interest.

He said that the lawyers struggle was for a tolerant, liberal, democratic and plural Pakistan in which the laws, and not men, are supreme. They wanted a vibrant and progressive modern Pakistan in which the citizen has rights and can enjoy the due process of law under an independent judiciary and a truly sovereign parliament.

Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan also said that even the parties that had decided to contest the elections were already calling them sham and rigged. Even the patrons of the regime had pronounced that these were not going to be perfect, which means that it is recognised, in advance, that these will be rigged. What can thus be achieved from such elections? he asked. Rigged elections cannot solve the many and diverse problems faced by the people.

Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan thanked the voters of his constituency who had shown such overwhelming enthusiasm for his candidature. He thanked the Pakistan Peoples Party for placing its trust in him. He also thanked the leadership of all other Opposition parties, and particularly Mian Nawaz Sharif, who had unanimously reposed confidence in him as a joint candidate of all the opposition parties.

Aitzaz Ahsans papers will be withdrawn after his signatures have been formally verified by the Superintendent Camp Jail, Lahore. That is a necessary formality as Mr. Ahsan is in a sub-jail.

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