SWABI, May 9: Awami Jamhoori Ittehad Pakistan (AJIP) has fielded eight candidates in the six provincial assembly and two National Assembly constituencies of Swabi district, claiming with confidence that it’ll bag all the seats on May 11.
A AJIP nominee is also in the running for the provincial assembly from Buner district.
“We have done our homework for winning nine out of nine seats. We have done our homework,” said AJIP founding chairman and candidate from NA-13, Swabi constituency Shahram Khan Tarakai.
Observers, however, said AJIP could win two to three seats or maybe four at the maximum.
After the election schedule was announced, Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf, Pakistan People’s Party-Parliamentarians, Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and other parties contacted Tarakai family to rope it in.
However, the family said it would support AJIP candidates instead of joining other parties.
Mr Shahram’s two uncles, ex-MNA Usman Khan Tarakai and former MPA Javed Khan Tarakai, contested the 2002 elections.
Usman defeated Awami National Party president Asfandyar Wali Khan and the latter ex-MPA Ameer Rehman.
Soon after the 2008 elections, Tarakai’s family established AJIP.
His two uncles, Usman Khan Tarakai and Mohammad Ali Tarakai, are contesting elections from NA-12 and PK-33, Swabi respectively.
The insiders said the reason Mr Shahram had opted for the NA-13 constituency was it was quite open.
No political party is dominant in the constituency, so anyone could win from here.
Mr Shahram’s rivals are ANP candidates, who say AJIP will not win elections.
Observers said the plus point of Mr Shahram was that numerous former union council nazims had joined his party.
They said use of money in elections could not be ruled out.
Mr Shahram, who has completed his master’s degree in business administration from Australia, won the district nazim election in 2005 when numerous people in his hometown were not familiar with him.
“During my tenure as district nazim, both former prime minister Shaukat Aziz and ex-president Pervez Musharraf visited Swabi. Musharraf announced a Rs100 million development package for the district and Shaukat Aziz inaugurated the Sui gas provision project,” he said in an election rally. “Why has the ANP leadership failed to convince the prime minister or the president to visit the district in the last 66 years? Actually, it has not taken interest in the development of the district,” he said.