PESHAWAR, April 10: Delay in award of party tickets by Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf has created unrest among its workers, who are yet to formally launch election campaign, while nominees of other political parties have kicked off canvassing in their respective constituencies.

The workers say that late decision by the party’s parliamentary board to nominate candidates for the May 11 election is likely to harm the party.  “The party is yet to decide about tickets for PK-1, 2 and 11 in Peshawar,” a senior PTI local leader said and claimed that weak candidates had been fielded in some other constituencies, which was causing worry among the workers who remained associated with the party for 17 years.

He complained that old party workers defeated in intra-party elections were ignored in award of tickets.

“Defeat in intra-party election doesn’t mean that the workers have no worth. I lost the district election to a politician who joined PTI only four months ago. Still I managed to get 200 votes against his 230. All the old activists supported me,” he said.

The ideological workers, who supported Imran Khan’s slogan of ‘change and build new Pakistan’, say that people have now started saying that PTI is no different from other family-dominated parties.

Award of tickets to wrong candidates in some constituencies and the delay in Peshawar have disappointed the PTI workers, another loser of intra-party elections told Dawn, while requesting anonymity.

“The PTI’s old guards were unable to compete with the new politicians in intra-party election, as they couldn’t match the wealth and experience of electoral politics of the new comers,” he said.

The unrest among the workers could also jeopardise Imran Khan’s campaign, who is contesting election from NA-1 Peshawar.

However, Zafarullah Khattak, a former city president, told Dawn that Imran Khan would win from Peshawar with thumping majority despite the current unrest among workers.

He said that the party was in the process of a review of party tickets in Peshawar. “The PTI will award tickets considering the capacity of candidates and those receiving tickets will be supported by all workers. We want to strengthen the hands of Imran Khan so he could implement the party manifesto,” said Mr Khattak.

He, however, said that the party leadership should keep in view the grievances of old workers while finalising tickets, as any wrong decision could prove detrimental to the party interests.

LANDI KOTAL: The PTI central leadership’s indecision concerning award of election tickets in Fata has left the party’s Khyber Agency chapter in disarray, badly hitting its election campaign.

As many as seven intending candidates have filed nomination papers for the two National Assembly constituencies. In the run for getting the party ticket for NA-45 are Malik Tahir, Khan Shed Kukikhel, Ameenzada Khan, Abdur Raziq and Rehman Gul. Iqbal Afridi and Javed Afridi are vying for the ticket for NA-46.

“It’s almost a month that the party leadership has kept us waiting for finalising its list of candidates for Fata, but still there is no final word from the party,” a frustrated Iqbal Afridi told Dawn. He said that indecision on part of the leadership was causing frustration among the party worker.

Another potential candidate Javed Afridi said that they were yet to kick off their campaign as the guessing game about award of tickets continued.

He was worried about the brisk campaign his opponents were carrying out in Bara, Jamrud and Landi Kotal. He said that they were yet to approach ordinary people and apprise them about the party manifesto and its policy on Fata.

Another interested candidate for NA-45 Ameenzada claimed that there were candidates who had been trying to influence the party chief to get his favour.

KHAR: PTI workers on Wednesday expressed concern over delay in award of party tickets to candidates in Bajaur Agency for upcoming election and threatened en masse resignations from the party if the ticket issue was not decided by Thursday (today).

Talking to media persons here, the workers and local leaders, including Nasir Khan, Hanifullh Khan and Izharul Haq, condemned the delay in allotment of party tickets to its candidates. They said that the delay was creating confusion among the workers. They claimed that a large number of PTI workers and supporters were disappointed due to delay in award of tickets.


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