ISLAMABAD, Oct 9: JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman has announced that the defunct Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal (MMA) will be revived minus Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) during a meeting of the religio-political parties to be held here on Oct 18.
Talking to reporters after presiding over a meeting of the Special Committee of the Parliament on Kashmir here on Tuesday, the JUI-F chief accused the JI of resorting to blackmailing by demanding 50 seats of the provincial and National assemblies from the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the next general elections besides the office of the president of the alliance.
This claim of the chief of the JUI-F was denied by the JI in strong terms, indicating that there is little chance of the two main religio-political parties coming together on one platform again in the near future.
Maulana Fazlur Rehman said the revived MMA would comprise JUI-F, JUI-S, Jamiat Ulema Pakistan (JUP), Jamiat Ahle Hadith and Islami Tehrik.
JI secretary general Liaquat Baloch, when contacted, termed all the allegations of the JUI-F chief baseless. He said the JI did talk about finalising an “election formula” during the talks with the JUI-F leadership but it never made any demand for seats. Similarly, he said, the issue of the MMA’s presidentship never came under discussion during the recent talks.
Ridiculing the Maulana’s claim, he asked from where the JUI-F could give 50 seats to the JI when it had less than 30 seats from the KP in both the National and the provincial assemblies.
“Why did the JUI-F not get 50 seats in the 2008 elections?” asked the JI leader whose party had boycotted the elections from the platform of All Parties Democratic Alliance (APDM) along with Imran Khan-led Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf.
The JI leader said his party had made sincere efforts to revive the MMA as it believed that the unity amongst the religious parties was the need of the hour. He said the JI had been asking the JUI-F to quit its alliance with the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), but the Maulana kept on using delaying tactics.
He said that though the JUI-F had come out of the ruling alliance at the centre, the party was still a part of the government with the PPP in Balochistan.
The efforts to revive the MMA had been going on for the past two years but all the efforts in this regard failed due to the differences between the JUI-F and the JI on a number of issues.