LAHORE: President Asif Ali Zardari has finally quit the office of PPP’s co-chairman, making his son Bilawal Bhutto Zardari the party’s patron-in-chief.
The decision was taken in view of a case in the Lahore High Court (LHC) against the president’s dual office. It may be mentioned that Advocate Wasim Sajjad, a counsel for the federation, had informed the LHC that President Zardari was a co-chairman of the PPP, which was a “private organisation”.
The PPP wants to get the ‘PPP’ registered with the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and lay claim on the election symbol of sword. (As the PPP Parliamentarians has applied for arrow).
PPP secretary-general Jehangir Badr and information secretary Qamar Zaman Kaira have been replaced with former Punjab governor Sardar Latif Khosa and former governor of Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Barrister Masood Kauser, respectively.
“We are going to apply to the ECP for registration of the PPP and the symbol of sword,” Mr Khosa told Dawn. He said only four offices of the PPP had been finalised. “Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has been elected PPP’s patron-in-chief and Barrister Masood Kauser and Amjad Ikhlaq as information and finance secretaries, respectively,” he said.
Mr Khosa said the PPP did not want its name to be used by Ms Nahid Khan or Ms Ghinwa Bhutto. The former governor of Punjab said he would now be able to play a more active role in his party’s affairs. “We will field potentially winning candidates in the coming elections and an exercise to short-list names is under way,” he added.
In the recent intra-party election of the PPP Parliamentarians, Makhdoom Amin Fahim and Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf were elected president and secretary-general, respectively.
Mr Badr’s application to get the PPP registered was pending with the ECP. Being a PPPP senator he reportedly couldn’t fight the case. Therefore, he was replaced with Mr Khosa.
President Zardari has also appointed Mr Khosa the ‘chief monitor’ for the general elections.