PTI leaves Wajihuddin alone in race for presidency

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With bleak chances of winning the presidential election, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leaders have left their candidate Justice (r) Wajihuddin Ahmed on his own in the race despite the fact that party chairman Imran Khan is known for fighting to the end.

Though the leaders of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) have been shuttling from one city to another to win support for their presidential candidates, the leadership of PTI looks in a “deep slumber” over the issue and this slackness indicates high indecision, confusion and lack of conviction within the party to make a serious effort to get their party’s candidate elected for the top slot.

A leader in the PTI told Pakistan Today on condition of anonymity that in absence of Imran Khan, the PTI leaders made no effort to win support for Justice Wajihuddin.

He said his party leaders had not even contacted likeminded parties like Awami Muslim League, Jamat-e-Islami, Qaumi Watan Party or Awami Jamhoori Ittehad of Swabi, let alone MQM.

The PTI leader said the indecision on making political contacts to win maximum support for Wajihuddin was due to fears and concerns among the second-tier leadership of the party that their efforts might be taken in the wrong perspective by the party chief and everyone was waiting for the return of Imran Khan from London.

But the situation also reflects how divisions are deepening within the party which is being taken by many as a replacement for the PML-N and the PPP.

Though Khan had delegated some powers to party’s vice chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi before leaving for London, the PTI leader said that it seemed Qureshi was hesitant to exercise those powers, fearing that he might be considered working for personal gains by many of his comrades, as differences between newcomers and the old guards still prevail.

PTI vice Chairman and Deputy Parliamentary Party Leader in the National Assembly Shah Mahmood Qureshi admitted the fact that to date no other party had been contacted by the PTI to seek support for Justice (r) Wajihuddin Ahmed.

However, Qureshi shot down the argument of indecision within the party, saying making symbolic contacts to create a false impression of activity was not PTI’s policy.

“We don’t have sufficient numbers for the (Presidential) election. Moreover, please tell me which party should we be contacting. The PML-N is a ruling party which has fielded its own candidate. So we can’t contact the PML-N or their coalition partners. Now the PPP also breached an agreement made with the PTI to field a joint candidate. They went solo,” he said, adding that the coalition partners of the PPP could also not be contacted.

Qureshi accused President Asif Ali Zardari and Khurshid Shah for sabotaging the possibility of fielding a joint candidate from the opposition for the election of the new president, saying he had presented a formula to Khurshid Shah that a non-political individual of impeccable stature and integrity should be fielded that was acceptable to all three major opposition parties, including the PPP, MQM and PTI.

“The rational behind the proposal was that a political entity would not be acceptable for all the three parties who have different ideologies and ideas. However, only a day after my proposal, President Zardari, before his departure from the country, conspired to sabotage this opportunity by fielding Raza Rabbani in violation of the agreement between the PTI and PPP,” Qureshi said, adding that Shah announced the nomination of Rabbani at a press conference without taking either party into confidence.

Qureshi said he had special regard for Rabbani, but since he represented a specific political party, he could not be a joint candidate.

Qureshi said he did not believe in taking artificial steps by holding meetings with politicians and having photo sessions for nothing.

“Since we don’t have numbers for giving a tough fight, I think that one should stay away from political gimmicks,” he added.

PML-Q Secretary Information Senator Kamil Ali Agha said the PTI had not yet contacted his party, adding that the PML-Q had made is support conditional to a joint candidate of the opposition parties.

“We wanted a joint candidate of the opposition parties. We had also made such an effort in 2008 and we also wanted this time around that a joint candidate should be fielded, one who at least had a chance to win against the treasury nominee,” he said.

2 COMMENTS

  1. PTI Members in National,KPK, Punjab and Sindh Assembles will be voting for justice Wajuddin Ahmed

  2. It seems there is some muk muka between Imran & Nawaz. Imran wants to increase his importance by meeting with Nawaz & Kayani alone. Nawaz has accepted his demand. Obvious is obvious. Moreover, he was having a hell of a good time in London enjoying luxuries of life at the expense of his ex-in-laws.

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