Updated Aug 25, 2018 12:06am

PML-N calls APC today to discuss presidential candidate

Nadir Guramani | Dawn.com | Javed Hussain

The PML-N has convened an All Parties Conference in Murree on Saturday to hold consultations regarding the nomination of a candidate for the presidential election.

PPP, Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI-F), Awami National Party and other party leaders have been invited to the conference, Radio Pakistan reported.

The Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal ─ an alliance of five religious parties ─ is ready to participate in the APC tomorrow, a party spokesperson told DawnNewsTV, adding that the delegation would comprise MMA and JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, JUI-F Secretary General Liaquat Baloch, and Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan-Noorani's (JUP-N) Shah Awais Noorani.

The spokesperson said the MMA would participate enthusiastically in the 11-party grand opposition alliance's consultative meeting.

"The presidential candidate will be discussed in the meeting," Noorani said. The spokesperson added that the participants of the meeting would also exchange views on how to play the role of an effective opposition, and would chalk out a protest strategy against alleged rigging in the July 25 polls.

JUI-F's Liaquat Baloch said that the MMA would hold a meeting on Aug 26 to discuss developments in the APC.

The PPP has also accepted the PML-N's invitation, senior leader Khursheed Shah confirmed to DawnNewsTV. Shah will be leading the PPP delegation.

He is expected to place the PPP's stance before all parties and brief party leaders on the decisions made in the Murree moot.

A PPP source told DawnNewsTV that Shah had intensified contacts with other parties ─ including the PML-N ─ in order to garner support for his party's candidate for president, Aitzaz Ahsan.

The source said Shah would try to convince the APC attendees tomorrow to support Ahsan as the joint presidential candidate.

The PML-N are not keen on supporting Ahsan, claiming that the PPP had not consulted any of the parties sitting on the opposition benches before making the decision.

However, tensions surfaced between the PPP and PML-N after the former refused to vote for PML-N President Shahbaz Sharif in the Aug 17 election for the office of prime minister due to his controversial statements against the PPP leadership in the past.

The PPP's nominee, Ahsan, has also made some unbecoming remarks about the illness of Nawaz Sharif's wife Kulsoom Nawaz in the recent past.

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