Pervez Musharraf has transformed from a military ruler and president of Pakistan to a friend of more than 140,000 Facebookers. Being the most successful campaigner on Facebook amongst all other Pakistani Politicians, Musharraf has now become one of the Facebook Stars worldwide.
Facebook actually turned out to be an opportunity for the retired general, who had left Pakistan with very little chances of returning back, at least in near future. He has managed to remain in the minds of Pakistanis through his Facebook Page.
Musharraf’s Facebook fan page can be viewed here
Through un-confirmed sources we have come to know that his Facebook page is managed by a New York based advertising firm. And they have done pretty well in advising Musharraf to personally respond to most (common) of the queries that his fans ask.
For instance, it was Facebook that he first admitted he had made a mistake by promulgating the National Reconciliation Ordinance.
Recently he was given tough time by fans on issue of Aafia Siddiqui.
We don’t want to get into debate of how good or how bad Musharraf is, but we will have to admit that he has used Facebook in best possible manner. He actually thanked Facebook in an interview given to CNN. He admitted that his supporters were dispersed, while Facebook gave him a chance to recollect all the supporters.
He has set an example and has proved that emerging tools are not for the developed world only, rather, if executed well, Internet and social media has strengths for a country like Pakistan as well.
By the way, President Asif Ali Zardari bears a techy mind too. For sure he is busy these days, but he may come up with a similar campaign once he is not in government (I am not giving you the exact time for that).
Moreover, let’s expect more campaigns in a specialized manner from other political parties.
There are total of 1,578,940 Facebook users in Pakistan, as of Feb, 2010.