Ghulam Ishaq Khan, who became Pakistan’s president in 1988 after the death of his predecessor in a plane crash, died Friday after a bout of pneumonia. He was 91.
Khan, who served as president until 1993, had been ill for three months and died in the northern city of Peshawar, where he spent most of his life, according to his son-in-law, Arfan Ullah Murwat.
A career bureaucrat, Khan was a close ally of military dictator Gen. Zia-ul Haq and held the post of chairman of Pakistan’s Senate in 1988 when Haq was killed in a plane crash in eastern Pakistan along with U.S. Ambassador Arnold L. Raphel and several top Pakistani generals.
Khan worked alongside former prime ministers Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif but dismissed the governments led by both in 1990 and 1993, respectively, on charges of corruption and mismanagement.
“He was an honest, upright person and dedicated to the services of Pakistan,” President Pervez Musharraf said, according to the state-run news agency.
The dispute between Khan and Sharif continued after a subsequent Supreme Court decision that reinstated Sharif’s government. Eventually, Pakistan’s powerful military intervened and forced Khan to resign in 1993.
Khan is survived by his wife, four daughters and one son. His funeral was to be held Friday in Peshawar.