LAHORE: The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) central Punjab has entered the second phase of party organisation to muster up public support at grassroots to make a comeback in the upcoming local government elections.
The PTI central Punjab region had performed poorly in the 2018 LG elections with just 17 per cent votes for the party’s candidates.
In a build-up to the local government election, the PTI has nominated 725 office-bearers in 14 central Punjab districts, including two in Lahore (north and south); 10 city corporations and 53 tehsils.
The re-organisation has entered its second phase at neighbourhood council and village level. The 725 nominated office-bearers, who have taken oath, have been tasked with getting governing bodies finalised at 2,500 neighourhood councils and over 7,500 village level in 60 days. The complete exercise will present 100,000 central Punjab party office-bearers by the end of February.
The PTI central Punjab governing body will review the nominated organisations at neighbourhood council and village level from Feb 20.
PTI chief organiser Saifullah Niazi has said no divisions would be tolerated within the party. He said different wings would be established that would seek guidance from the central leadership.
Speaking at the oath-taking ceremony of 725 nominated office-bearers, Mr Niazi lauded PTI central Punjab President Ejaz Chaudhry for completing the organisation at district, city and tehsil governing bodies.
Stressing maintenance of discipline at every level in the party, Mr Niazi said an independent disciplinary committee had been constituted at central level to examine and take decisions against those violating party discipline, including speaking against the party in electronic, print and social media. He said similar committees would also be constituted at regional level.
The organiser said the nominated office-bearers and active workers would be imparted training and a clear chain of command created for taking prompt and well-coordinated decisions.
Mr Niazi said the party organisation would also report about MNAs and MPAs performance to the party chairman.
Ejaz Chaudhry said a central Punjab office-bearers’ grand convention would be held in March. He said the fresh party organisation’s real challenge would be to perform well in the local government elections – expected to be held by the end of March or April.
Meanwhile, the party’s three Punjab region presidents and general secretaries, led by chief organiser Niazi, called on Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and discussed matters pertaining to improving party affairs as well as proposals to make PTI more vibrant and effective at grassroots. In order to improve governance, the meeting agreed to make the process of mutual consultations a regular feature. Acknowledging party workers as a valuable asset of the PTI, the chief minister said their capabilities would be channelised and used for strengthening of the party. “Office-bearers and workers of PTI are our pride,” the chief minister said.
He also assured the office-bearers and workers that their grievances would be adressed on priority. He said he had planned visits of all districts of Punjab where he would meet the party office-bearers and workers to know about people’s problems and their resolution. “The doors of the chief minister’s office will remain open for party office-bearers and workers to work hand-in-hand and serve people across the province,” Mr Buzdar said.
The chief minister also claimed that everything was being done in Punjab on merit and the performance of the province was far better than other provinces. He said the previous government had accumulated massive problems during the past 30 years. Instead of pomp and show, Mr Buzdar said, the PTI government believed in performing for public welfare with true intentions.
The chief minister also told the party organisation leaders that necessary steps were being taken for holding local government elections around April.
Among others present included central senior vice president Arshad Dad, central vice president Umar Sarfaraz Cheema, central deputy secretary general Umar Mir, central joint secretary Musaddiq Ghuman, good governance secretary Ijaz Minhas, central Punjab president Ejaz Chaudhry, north Punjab president Sadaqat Abbasi, south Punjab president Noor Bhabha, central Punjab general secretary Ali Imtiaz Warraich, north Punjab general secretary Dr Hassan Masood, south Punjab general secretary Ali Raza Dreshak and chief whip and MPA Syed Abbas Ali Shah.
Published in Dawn, December 16th, 2019