KARACHI, May 12: The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has again emerged as the majority party in Sindh is capable of forming government in the province without support of any party.
According to unofficial results, the party has bagged 70 of the 130 general seats and will share with other parties 38 seats reserved for women and minorities.
Contrary to the 2002 elections in which the PPP had won almost the same number of seats in the Sindh Assembly on the crest of martyrdom of its leader Benazir Bhutto, the May 11 results had belied the claims of its opponents by maintaining its strength.
The 11-party alliance in the province led by the PML-F failed to make any dent in the Pakistan People’s Party fort.
The Sindh PPP leadership is likely to converge in Karachi on Tuesday for consultation on probable candidates for the posts of the leader of the house and speaker and deputy speaker.
Because of its past experience, the PPP this time is likely to obtain support of independents or likeminded smaller groups for effective governance in the province.
According to sources in the PPP, there were reservations among leaders over forming another coalition with its previous major partner MQM because of sharp differences with it over the issue of local government system.
The PPP leaders, according to the sources, are of the opinion that during its last tenure it had suffered because of problems with the MQM which despite sharing power continued to play the role of opposition on many sensitive issues.
Besides, on the issue of posting and transfer of officials, it remained under tremendous pressure which contributed to bad governance.
When asked about forming the government with smaller groups and independents, PPP (Parliamentarians) President Makhdoom Amin Faheem said a decision in this regard would be taken by the party high command which would meet soon. It would be premature to say something now, he added.
PPP’s Sindh Secretary General Taj Haider said the party would take a decision on the matter after the seat position became clear. “But let me assure you that it will be in the best interest of the province and its people.”
The names of Nisar Ahmad Khuhro, Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani and Owais Muzaffar Tappi are being mentioned for the post of chief minister in the influential quarters of the party.
Syed Qaim Ali Shah, the most experienced hand of the party who served twice as chief minister, is likely to be offered the post of speaker if he agrees.
Former speaker Nisar Khuhro, who had been tipped for the post of chief minister in 2002 by Benazir Bhutto, is now a strong contender for the job. He has also served as the leader of opposition and is capable of effectively running the government.
Hazar Khan Bijarani is also an experienced hand and commands respect in the party, but analysts are of the opinion that Muzaffar Tappi may be given the post because he is a new entrant and enjoys the blessings of President Asif Ali Zardari and Faryal Talpur for being their foster brother. They are of the opinion that a man who enjoys confidence of the top party leadership can prove to be a good leader of the house.