ISLAMABAD: Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani has said he fully supports the idea of holding a free, fair and transparent election leading to a smooth transfer of power in the country, a prominent columnist for an influential Urdu daily wrote in today's edition of the daily.
Columnist Irfan Siddiqui wrote that in a candid conversation with journalists on Sunday, Kayani said he had assured the chief election commissioner of full cooperation on the matter.
The army chief also said that electing either competent or incompetent rulers was the prerogative of the people and not of the army.
Kayani further said the army had stood by the democratically-elected government for the past five years in light of the essence of the country's constitution, adding that he supported the idea of a smooth transfer of power through the holding of a general election.
The chief of army staff said a free, fair and transparent election in the country was a dream, adding that he was delighted that it would soon be fulfilled.
Kayani said his intentions should be gauged not from his statements but from his actions and from the facts on ground, wrote Siddiqui.
He said the army was constitutionally obligated to stand by the country's government.
Siddiqui is said to have a soft spot for the military and the right wing in his writings.