PPP seeks MQM’s help for Gilani’s Senate vote

Published February 28, 2021
Former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani. — File photo
Former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani. — File photo

KARACHI: The Pakistan Peoples Party on Saturday sought the support of rival Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan for former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani on an Islamabad Senate seat and offered the latter that the PPP was ready to withdraw its two nominees in favour of the MQM-P’s candidates.

The MQM-P, which is a coalition partner of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf at the centre and contesting Senate election in Sindh along with it and the Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA), has not responded to the PPP offer saying the matter would be decided in a meeting of the party’s coordination committee.

A close contest is expected between Mr Gilani and Finance Minister Abdul Hafeez Sheikh of the ruling PTI and both the parties had approached the MQM-P for its seven votes in the National Assembly.

A delegation of PPP’s provincial set-up led by Sindh Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Shah and comprising Murtaza Wahab, Waqar Mehdi, Sharjeel Memon and others arrived at the MQM-P’s temporary headquarters in Bahadurabad.

Ready to withdraw two nominees in favour of the MQM-P’s candidates

Talking to reporters after holding a meeting, Mr Shah said that they came to the MQM headquarters on the directives of PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and held discussion with regard to the Senate election.

“We will support the MQM if it supports us in the Senate,” he said, adding that the PPP was ready to withdraw its two candidates against as many MQM-P nominees in Sindh in return for its help for Mr Gilani’s Islamabad Senate seat.

He said that the MQM-P would consult its coordination committee and then communicate its decision to the PPP.

Speaking on the occasion, senior MQM-P leader Amir Khan said that the PPP delegation expressed the desire to contest jointly the March 3 Senate election in the country. “We have heard their proposal and we will present it in the next meeting of our coordination committee for a discussion. Whatever the coordination committee decides we will let the PPP know,” he said.

He said during the meeting the MQM-P asked the PPP to take meaningful steps to remove the sense of deprivation that had been prevailing among the people of urban Sindh for the past 12 years and also consider launching development projects and providing employment to youths.

Mr Memon thanked the MQM-P for a cordial welcome and said the PPP would address all legitimate concerns of the MQM. “We hope the MQM will give us a positive response [about Senate],” he said.

Senior MQM-P leader Faisal Subzwari stressed the need of replicating what he called the Punjab model — where all Senate candidates have returned unopposed after the contesting parties reached an understanding — for the Senate election in Sindh.

Published in Dawn, February 28th, 2021

Opinion

Editorial

More leaks
Updated 29 Sep, 2022

More leaks

Recent leaks look more like an inside job than the work of a foreign power.
A depressing winter
29 Sep, 2022

A depressing winter

WINTER is on its way, with a massive gas crunch looming as elevated global LNG prices have eroded the cash-strapped...
Great expectations
29 Sep, 2022

Great expectations

CONSIDERING that the Afghan Taliban have been in the saddle for over a year now, the UN has expressed frustration...
The whole truth
28 Sep, 2022

The whole truth

THE war on truth has never been more relentless than it is today. Authoritarianism is on the rise and purveyors of...
Real-world trolls
Updated 28 Sep, 2022

Real-world trolls

It's reprehensible how PTI supporters now seem convinced that politicians from opposing camps aren't entitled to basic dignity.
Islamabad wildlife
28 Sep, 2022

Islamabad wildlife

PRESERVING biodiversity is low on the list of priorities of both state and society. However, successful attempts at...