London - 12 December 1999

Mr Altaf Hussain, Founder and Leader of Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM), in a statement said that when his silence is broken, the truth and the whole truth comes out, that is liked by a few people while the majority of those at the helm of affair find it extremely bitter. He said that two months ago, Nawaz Sharif's oppressive and tyrannical Government was ousted and the nation had a sigh of relief and felt that they would be relieved of the unlawful and unconstitutional machinations of the agencies and its barbarism. The people felt that those political plunderers and pirates arrested would be brought to book and punished while the innocents would be provided justice.

Mr Altaf Hussain said that one hundred forty (140) million people had a sigh of relief on the ouster of Nawaz Sharif Government and on the announcement of the agenda of the new Government that included the promise of the arrests of the plunderers and pirates. Two months have elapsed and with the exception of two and a half dozen of persons, none of the dinosaurs have been arrested. Mr Altaf Hussain stated that people had been waiting for the reduction in the rising prices, recovery of 21.3 billion rupees of looted national wealth, they felt that if not three square meals a day, at least two square meals would be made available. However, with the elapse of two months, justice and relief has not been made available to the common people and the well known plunderers of the national wealth have not been arrested so far while the announcement to raise the price on petrol, diesel and kerosene oil has been made.

Mr Altaf Hussain said that kerosene oil is not used by wealthy people but the ninety-eight (98) per cent of the down trodden people and the present Government should not take such steps that would increase the burden of these people while the wealthy people living a luxurious life remain unaffected. He stated that we hear different and fresh news about the accountability, the Government claims that every one will face accountability including politicians, bureaucrats, judiciary and the armed forces. Those prominent figures arrested since 16th. November on the account of accountability included a former Air Marshal and we now hear that a former Naval Admiral would also be arrested for misappropriating funds in the submarine dealings.

Mr Altaf Hussain appreciated the arrests of these prominent figures but said that it should not only confined to the Air Force and Navy but corrupt Army officers should also be held accountable. He said that in this connection, he would take the name of Lt. Gen. (Retired) Nasir Akhtar, who was the corps commander of Karachi for several years. He said that not only the businessmen and traders are aware of the record of corruption he had set in his tenure but also the civil and military officials are aware.

Mr Altaf Hussain stated that an investigation should be commissioned to find out the details of his personal properties and possessions and also the numbers of his petrol pumps and landholdings. During his tenure, the army personnel were stationed at his petrol stations for security, which was misuse of his authority, and this act is against the rules and the conduct of the Army. Mr Altaf Hussain said that he would wait for the actions of the Chief Executive, General Parvez Musharraf, Members of the National Security Council and the Cabinet in this regard. He also said that he is astounded that no action has been taken against those Generals concerning their corruption and distribution of secret funds to the political parties.

Finally, he appealed to General Parvez Musharraf and his associates that if they can not provide relief to the common man by reducing the prices then they should stop price hikes because the ninety-eight per cent down trodden people can not afford the weight of further inflation.