ISLAMABAD, Oct 18: The Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal (MMA), which exists in parliament only in name, will be revived under the same banner but without two key partners — Jamaat-i-Islami and Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (Sami).
The decision was taken at a meeting of representatives of five religious parties, including a breakaway faction of the JUI (Sami), here on Thursday, according to JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman.
Talking to reporters, he said the parties had decided ‘in principle’ to revive the MMA which had been dormant since the 2008 general elections and that the alliance would become functional after their next meeting in which its office-bearers would be elected.
Besides the JUI-F, the meeting was attended by representatives of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan (Abul Khair), Jamiat Ahle Hadith, JUI (Senior) and Tehrik-i-Islami Pakistan.
“MMA’s revival is the need of the hour because Pakistan is facing a situation similar to that in neighbouring Afghanistan,” the JUI-F chief said.
He said the issue of inclusion of the JI in the alliance had not been discussed in the meeting. He said JI’s inclusion into the alliance could be considered if it was contacted by the party.
Maulana Fazl, who is set to become the head of the revived MMA, said the religious parties were against a military operation in any part of the country, including North Waziristan.
He said the government would have to face embarrassment and failure if it tried to move a resolution in parliament for an operation in North Waziristan.
The Maulana made it clear that he neither supported the Taliban nor the government. Those who attended the meeting included Sahibzada Abul Khair Muhammad Zubair, Prof Sajid Mir, Allama Sajid Naqvi, Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri and Pir Abdushakoor Naqshbandi.
JUP’s Abul Khair, who presided over the meeting, said the alliance’s manifesto and future plan would be finalised next month.
After Maulana Fazl announced earlier this month that the MMA would be revived minus the JI on Oct 18, JUI (Sami) chief Maulana Samiul Haq reportedly said that his party had no intention to join it.
Analysts believe that in view of charges levelled by leaders of the JUI-F and JI against each other, there are slim chances that the two parties will be able to come together on one platform.