07192018Headline:

Asif Zardari lacks support from PPP for joining PAT Protest by Abdul Q Kundi

As a member of opposition coalition, we keep contact with PPP parliamentarians and other party officials. From these, the sense we get is that Asif Ali Zardari does not enjoy party-wide support to join the PAT protest to be launched on Jan 17th. The main reason is that PAT in its first dharna in 2013 and later in 2014 hurled abuse at PPP leadership, A video of Qamar Zaman Kaira mocking PAT chief is widely circulating on social media and now the same person is asked to join the organizing committee of the protest. Not only that allies of PAT Sheikh Rasheed and Imran Khan used derogatory language against Bilawal Zardari which is still not forgotten by party members. The decision to join PAT protest was single-handedly made by Mr. Zardari without building consensus in the party. His close friends Manzoor Wattoo and Latif Khosa participated in the meeting with PAT rather than party officials which also shows the dissent within the party.

This is not the first time PPP as a party has refused to follow the decision of Mr. Zardari. Here is a short list of decisions of Mr. Zardari that was not supported by the party:

– In 2015 after returning from self-imposed exile Mr. Zardari announced to contest election to become MNA. Party refused to allow him to do that.
– Mr. Zardari wanted to keep Qaim Ali Shah as CM but party opposed and replaced him with Murad Ali Shah.
– Irfan Marwat met Mr. Zardari and announced his decision to join PPP. Party member retaliated including his daughters and Irfan Marwat left to support PTI-L (lotas) candidate in a by-election.
– Mr. Zardari wanted Dr. Asim to run Karachi but party wanted Saeed Ghani to manage Karachi.
– Mr. Zardari wanted to keep Manzoor Wattoo as President of Punjab but party retaliated and new set up was announced.
– Mr. Zardari wanted to derail constitutional amendment to delay delimitation bill in Senate but party prevailed and the bill was passed.
– Senator Farhatullah Babar proposed inclusion of Judges and Generals in the accountability bill but Mr. Zardari opposed while Mr. Bilawal supported it.
– The leader of opposition Khursheed Shah supported Saad Rafique speech while Mr. Zardari supported DG ISPR statement condemning it.

This is just a short list of PPP members refusing to accept civilian dictatorship of Mr. Zardari. We welcome this activism of PPP members and hope that they will continue striving to save PPP as a national party.

This decision of PPP members to oppose participation in PAT protest confirm that the earlier decision of PTI members not to participate in it was correct. PTI-L (lotas) that seems to be pleasing third umpires can participate in PAT protests. It is the childish politics of PTI-L that has made PML N much stronger and united party. The failure of governance of PML N is now overshadowed by iqama verdict against Nawaz Sharif.

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