Musharraf Says Plans to Form New Party, Contest Pakistan Elections in 2013

By Simeon Bennett for Bloomberg News

Pervez Musharraf, the former president of Pakistan, said he plans to form a new political party and contest elections scheduled for 2013, before seeking to become prime minister or president.

“A time has come in Pakistan where we need to introduce a new political culture, a culture which can take Pakistan forward on a correct democratic path, not an artificial, make-believe democratic path,” Musharraf, 67, said in an interview with the British Broadcasting Corp.

Musharraf, a former army chief who seized power in 1999 and became a U.S. ally against terrorism, stepped down as president in 2008 to avoid impeachment charges for illegally seizing power and mishandling the economy. He left Pakistan after resigning and now lives in London, according to the BBC.

Police in Pakistan last August issued charges against him for unlawfully keeping top judges under house arrest in 2007, when he imposed emergency rule in the country.

Musharraf said if he returns to Pakistan he will face some legal cases, may risk being killed, and will answer every allegation against him, the BBC reported.

Opinion polls, which show Musharraf’s popularity is low in Pakistan, can be manipulated, he said, adding that his popularity is increasing.

“As far as Pakistan as a state and the people of Pakistan are concerned, we did wonders for them in those seven years, which should be compared with the 50 years of the past,” Musharraf said.

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