ISLAMABAD- The leader of the team prosecuting former President General (retd) Pervez Musharraf says, the continual rescheduling of the court case has come at a high financial cost to the country.
Mr Musharraf, who has been indicted for treason on charges relating to his 2007 imposition of emergency rule, has failed to appear in court 13 times, citing medical and security reasons. Leader of the prosecution team, Akram Sheikh, told Asia Pacific a 'phenomenal' amount of money has been spent since the case was filed in December last year. "The expenditure that was spent on his security for 13 dates, it was fixed for his appearance, they were phenomenal, not affordable by a poor country like Pakistan," he said.
Retired Army Lieutenant General and political commentator, Talat Masood said he is unsure why Mr Musharraf is delaying his court appearance. "Because on one hand, he decided voluntarily to come back to Pakistan, to clear himself, because he thought he had done nothing wrong and his point of view would be vindicated," he told Asia Pacific. "Maybe he misunderstood and there was some sort of assurance from certain quarters. It seems he was in a dilemma as to whether he should go to the court or not."
The case has now been adjourned until April 15, 2014. Mr Musharraf has been granted an exemption from appearing in the court hearings, but could be ordered to appear when required. His lawyer has also filed a formal request with the interior ministry to let him travel to Dubai to visit his elderly mother who is ill. Musharraf would have to be removed from the government's exit control list before he could leave Pakistan.