Elections roundup: Lessons from Mexico City

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After years of biding his time in the drudgery of electoral politics, Andrés Manuel López. better known as ‘Amlo’ has finally been swept into power by the Mexican people and is set to take charge as the country’s president.

For PTI Chairman Imran Khan, Amlo’s win will be inspirational. After all, the two leaders have a couple of things in common. For one, they’ve both been outsider candidates screaming on the fringes on an agenda of tackling corruption. Both mens’ fortunes turned with the last elections they participated in, where they both came in close thirds, and Imran currently seems to be riding the same high tide that has finally brought Amlo to office.

Another similarity, of course, is that both men have had a hard time accepting defeat when they have lost elections in the past. To his credit, Imran did not react nearly as badly as Amlo did back in 2006. While the PTI leader had chosen to hold multiple sit-ins against the PML-N, Amlo had gone a much different and much more creative route back when he first lost, deciding to hold a fake inauguration for himself where he was ‘sworn in’ as Mexico’s rightful Prime Minister. Where Imran and Amlo do differ, however, is ideology. For Amlo is a socialist who has promised ‘great change.’ Talk of change aside, Imran is no leftist. And while this may be the one thing Khan cannot relate to with Amlo, it is perhaps the one thing the Mexican President-elect has in common with Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, who has promised food cards as part of his agenda.

Food cards aren’t exactly a cheery thing to think about. They are a too-simple answer to a complicated reality. Perhaps that is why he was greeted with stones in Lyari. Since then, Bilawal has denied the entire event, which clearly did happen, saying that his opponents simply couldn’t handle his warm reception in Lyari. Perhaps that is one thing Imran, Bilawal and Amlo all share: delusion.

I’LL BE BACK: 

Two people that seem to be fighting through the delusion are Maryam and Nawaz Sharif. According to reports, the two have decided to return to the country next Monday. Problem is, the accountability court wants to see them on Wednesday? But whenever it happens, the two are going to be back in Pakistan at some point. And with barely a few weeks left in the polls, they won’t be returning just to appear in court, that is for sure.

HIS LORDSHIP BACK IN THE SPOTLIGHT:

The Chief Justice and COAS have been featured in election posters of the PTI’s Nasir Cheema of PP-67. That is a big no according to the ECP, which has given the candidate a mouthful. True, the move was unseemly on Cheema’s part. Guess the CJ is allowed on campaigns as long as he’s strutting around with a candidate in person and doesn’t have his picture up on a poster.

A NONSTARTER:

PSP head Mustafa Kamal has basically admitted defeat by saying his party contesting the polls is the real victory. Dr Tahir ul Qadri has boycotted the elections. Smart, an embarrassing showing would drop his value as a rabble-rouser.