PESHAWAR, Pakistan — Pakistani newspapers attacked Prime Minister Khawaja Asif on Sunday, accusing him of betraying Pakistan.
The attack comes just days after the government said the president would be ousted for his failure to address the country’s economic woes.
The Times of India newspaper said the prime minister had failed to fulfill the countrys promises.
“Khawaja Asiff failed to implement the promises he made to the people and the people did not want his successor,” the newspaper said in a front-page editorial.
The prime minister’s government was widely criticized in the country, including by Pakistan’s ruling elite.
Asif’s government had faced criticism for a string of economic missteps.
It said in January that its economy had contracted by 4.6 percent in the year to June 30, the worst performance in more than a decade.
As a result, the government has been forced to introduce a new tax to pay for its $1.9 trillion debt.
“The prime minister has betrayed the nation by failing to address serious economic problems and the economic consequences of his decisions,” the Times of Indian newspaper said.
“It is a clear indication of the weakness of his leadership.”
The Pakistani government did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sunday.
A political party said it will challenge Asif in the April 18 election.
As many as 20 opposition leaders have called on Asif to step down.
A government spokesman said Sunday that Asif was “ready to step aside.”
The prime minster has been criticized for failing to respond to mounting economic woes, including for missing his official target of reducing Pakistan’s budget deficit by more than 2 percent.
The country’s economy is facing severe pressure as the global financial crisis deepens.