PTI strategy for next general elections – Imran Khan is sadiq aur ameen

If PTI Islamabad jalsa can be summed up in one sentence then it could be that PTI strategy for next general elections is that Imran Khan is sadiq aur ameen while others are not. I think this strategy will not translate into election win for following reasons:

1. All of us know Imran Khan does not engage in financial corruption. But he can contest elections on a handful of constituencies. Let’s say he contests on three and wins it too because he is sadiq aur ameen. But what about the other 269 constituencies. Will he be giving tickets to sadiq aur ameen candidates or prefer those that has joined him from PML-Q, PML-N, and PPP? I doubt if these people can win using the argument of sadiq aur ameen.

2. Imran Khan said that corruption has severely damaged the nation and undermined our economic prosperity. I agree with him. But when voters compare the living and economic conditions in KP, Sind, and Punjab they may feel they are better off than the other two provinces. So in Punjab, they might arrive at the judgment that despite corruption they are better off with PML-N. As the pundits say all politics is local.

3. Imran Khan is sadiq aur ameen and considers corruption as a termite that is eating the nation away. But this same Imran Khan did not do anything to contain corruption in KP and allowed DG Ehtisab to resign but did not allow him to open cases against a sitting CM. So he has not walked the talk and if Imran Khan thinks voters will not remember it then he should be ready for a shock.

4. The recent Gallup survey showed that despite an almost daily focus on corruption PTI did not gain voters. It gained 2% which is within the margin of error and even that is a decline in PPP rather than PML-N.

5. The crowd in PTI jalsas are decreasing because people have lost hope in PTI as the same old tired status quo politicians are now sitting around IK. There was hardly 6000 people which is the lowest crowd to listen to IK. Here is a picture from PTI Official Facebook page of the crowd when IK was in Jalsa gah:

Posted by Imran Khan (official) on Friday, April 28, 2017

Here are the number of Chairs in the Jalsa gah:

Posted by Imran Khan (official) on Friday, April 28, 2017

Here is the body language of IK and JKT after they saw the crowd:

عمران خان اور جہانگیرترین سٹیج پر خوشگوار موڈ میں۔

Posted by Jahangir Khan Tareen on Friday, April 28, 2017

The bad news for JKT is that Imran Khan once again repeated that a businessman can’t be a good ruler and must not be allowed to rule. In other words, IK is using JKT’s money for his political career and JKT is using IK popularity for his political aims (or may be business aims). At some point, they will be at each other’s throats for the control of the party as this honeymoon has an expiration date. IK thinks he knows politics better than JKT and vice versa. But the reality is both has the same level of political acumen.

Bottom line is that JKT and Asad Umar, who are key advisers of IK, have zero political acumen. Both of them are masters of manipulation though. This year I made a resolution that I will not send party any political advice. Now I am getting calls and messages asking why I stopped? I think it is waste of time. PTI members have sent a clear message through lack of participation in today’s jalsa that you reject current party politics, illegitimate officeholders, and will not waste time with these status quo politicians. You will prefer to sit home rather than empower these status quo politicians.

We are in politics for a purpose. So my advice to all of the party members is to work in your constituencies. Identify good candidates. Create a network of volunteers. And reach out to voters to gain their trust. Soon we will make a decision whether we stay with IK but he has to allow us to develop an organization or find some other option.

What Next?

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