Since time immemorial human beings have devised certain moral and ethical principles which are observed by peoples of all colour, creed and race all over the world and across all cultural frontiers to govern themselves peacefully. They are also called virtues and vices and some of these have even been made into laws by all civilised nations. Foremost among these universal and timeless principles are truthfulness and lying, because they constitute the foundation all other moral values, ethics and laws and because the very existence, peace, progress and prosperity of a society depends on the observance of these two principles. It is not without reason that perjury has been made a crime in all states. Islam has equally and even more strongly forbidden its followers from lying. It takes such a serious view of lying that it debars a person who has lied even once from being admitted as a witness in a court of law. On the other hand the quality of truthfulness, particularly in a leader, is regarded as the most essential and important requirement because he who holds an office of state holds the destiny of a nation and welfare of millions of his compatriots. It was this quality of the Prophet of Islam (PBUH) that made the people of Makkah give him the title of Ameen and entrust him with the heavy responsibility of resolving the dispute over the issue of who should place the Black Stone (Hajr-e-Aswad) in the corner of the rebuilt Great Mosque (Khanay-e-Kaaba). This was such a ticklish issue that a wrong decision could have led to a long and bloody civil war, deaths of thousands in and around Makkah and bloodshed and for years to come. However, the people trusted only one man and only because he had never lied and never broken his promise in his life. That man was Mohammad bin Abdullah, not yet a Prophet, in whose fairness they had an unimpeachable faith even though he belonged to the ruling tribe of Makkah. No one felt uncomfortable about placing their trust in him because they were absolutely certain that though he was a member of "the majority party" he would never favour it in the choice of Kaaba's stewardship at the cost of dividing the community and laying the foundation of a bloody and long term civil war. They were sure that the unity and welfare of the entire community would be his prime motive and not some financial benefit that would come to his tribe from the control of the Kaaba. Most of our present day leaders seem to believe that lying in politics is not only justified but fair, a virtue, a sign of the cleverness even his manliness. They seem to think that no one can be a great leader unless he can speak white lies and befool the people. That is how President Musharraf thought and acted. Throughout his nine years as president he lied to the nation on every occasion which in his views was necessary to prolong his rule. He lied about Kargil, he lied about the circumstances of Nawaz Sharif's visit to Washington, he lied about doffing his uniform in December 2004, he lied in the judicial reference about Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry, he lied about not putting him and his family under house arrest, and he lied about resigning if his party was defeated in the 2008 elections. He lied to his family, he lied to the Pakistanis, he lied to the Americans and he lied to the world. Now we are again witnessing a similar act of blatant lying and attempt to hoodwink the nation by the PPP leader. He has used every tactics, semantics, and excuse to wriggle out of the several verbal and written commitments to reinstate the judges, including the CJ, who were unconstitutionally removed by the illegal president General (retd) Musharraf. Now, having exausted all the excuses he says that these agreements "are not holy like the Holy Quran and the Hadith" and can be modified if circumstances change. This point is too brazenly frivolous even to be argued. But I would like to remind the co-chairman that the Prophet had not yet received a single revelation when he was given the title of Ameen and called by the people of Makkah to find a solution to the dispute over the Hajr-e-Aswad. And it was the same faith of the people in his truthfulness that made them believe that Jibreel Aleyhiss Salam (Angel Gabriel) had come to him and given him the revelation "read, read in the name of thy Lord..." When demagogues win the loyalty and support of hundreds of intelligent and honest people and millions of simple folks, they definitely need to be watched very closely. Neither loyalty, nor fear, nor greed for power or anything else should lure good and patriotic people to surrender so abjectly to the wrong moves and decisions of their leader. History is full of examples of leaders who win popularity among their people but cause them, and eventually their own selves, enormous and long term damage. Just a few examples from recent history, Hitler, Mussolini, Saddam Hussein, Iddi Ameen, ZAB, Ziaul Haq, Pervez Musharraf, Bush and Blair. All of them made their people pay a heavy price for following them blindly and although their own end was also ugly, it was of no consolation to the people who could never recover the loss of life, resources and opportunities that were lost to them because of the mis-rule which was build on lies. Therefore let us all pledge that we will not accept any one as our president who attaches no importance to truth. I hope that the lawyers, the media and the civil society will continue to struggle for the reinstatement of the judges and the annulment of the 17th Amendment. We must not accept dictatorship in any form, Civil or military, for it is the most destructive form of government invented by man. This is our last opportunity to save Pakistan. We must not fail, with or without Nawaz Sharif. The writer is a former ambassador E-mail: