LAHORE - Veteran politician Syeda Abida Hussain believes that the county’s civil institutions need to be strengthened vis-à-vis those of the military to maintain balance of power.

Speaking at ‘meet the press programme’ of Lahore Press Club on Thursday, she said Pakistan’s civil institutions were too weak to hold military accountable for its sluggishness. 

She underlined the need for empowering the civil institutions to maintain the balance of power between the civil and military institutions. But political leadership would have to work with commitment and sincerity for this purpose, she said, adding unlike Pakistan neighboring India did not allow its civil institutions to become ineffective.

To a question, Abida said Pakistan’s law-enforcing agencies did not have capacity and competence to counter and eliminate extremist elements. Answering a question about holding negotiations with Taliban, she said it would be of no use to have talks with the religious extremists because they had already taken an extreme position. Though Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan had been strong proponents of holding talks with the Taliban, but they were indecisive about the mechanism and a clear agenda of talks.

On Pak-US relations, Abida Husain who has also served as ambassador to the US, preferred to avoid comments on whether or not the only superpower was involved in terrorism and unrest in Pakistan, especially in Fata and Balochistan. She, however, said the US always held her interests above everything else and might think of disintegrating Pakistan if her interests so required.

“But I think it is not in the US interest to disintegrate Pakistan since it would disturb the balance of power in the region,” she observed, adding Pakistan was a nuclear power and its disintegration would not be controlled by the US.

To another question, Aida said Indo-Israeli nexus against Pakistan was a reality and must not be ignored.

The two countries, she said, had been working to destabilise Pakistan through promoting divisions among the Muslim sects.