The President of Pakistan said in an interview aired on Sunday that he will not run for another term, a decision that was widely expected after his party was trounced in parliamentary elections in May.
It was Asif Ali Zardari’s first interview since the May 11 election when his Pakistan People’s Party, which controlled the outgoing Government, won only 39 seats in the 342-member House, compared to 176 for the winning Pakistan Muslim League-N.
Under Pakistan’s Constitution, the President is elected by members of both houses of Parliament as well as provincial legislatures, making it highly unlikely that Zardari would be able to garner enough support for another five-year term.
During the television interview, Zardari acknowledged his party’s loss in explaining why he would not run when his term expires in September.
“I don’t think I will have a right. This time we wouldn’t have a right because we don’t have a majority,” he said.