After much drama, MQM-P finally decides to join coalition govt to 'pull country out of quagmire'

Web Desk
February 25, 2024

"The ideal situation is not to become part of the coalition government," says Mustafa Kamal

MQM-P senior leader Syed Mustafa Kamal while revealing the party manifesto in Karachi on January 4, 2024. — Facebook/MQM-Pakistan


After much deliberation, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) finally decided to join the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N)-led coalition government at the Centre in a bid to pull the "country out of the quagmire," party's deputy convener Mustafa Kamal revealed on Sunday.

As the February 8 general election resulted in no political party securing enough seats to form a majority government at the Centre, key political players have been holding negotiations to chalk out a power-sharing formula for the new coalition government.

In a breakthrough last week, the PML-N and the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) announced striking a power-sharing deal to form a coalition government.

Under the deal, PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif will be elected as the country's prime minister while PPP Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari retain the slot of president for the next five years.

Speaking on Geo News programme Naya Pakistan today, Kamal said the ideal situation is not to become a part of the coalition government to be led by PML-N's Shehbaz.

However, the former Karachi mayor said the decision to join the government had been taken to steer the country out of the crisis. "The negotiation with the PML-N is underway in the right direction," he said, adding that the MQM-P wanted to take responsibility for serving their electorate.

He also rejected the reports of deadlock with the PML-N during negotiations on a power-sharing formula at the Centre.

Kamal also said that in the first phase, newly-elected lawmakers would take oath and the decision regarding ministries would be taken in a second phase.

"I will not confirm about [how many ministries] we are demanding," he said. "We have decided that [MQM-P] will become a part of the government and will also take the ministries."

Kamal said the MQM-P would present its draft for constitutional amendment and they wanted the PML-N to support it. "We have accepted a challenge to become part of the government."

Earlier this week, PML-N's nominee for the prime minister slot Shehbaz met an MQM-P delegation and the two sides agreed on prioritising national interest over political gains and working jointly to serve people and solve their problems.

During the meeting, which focused on crucial political issues, Shehbaz reiterated the paramount importance of upholding the sanctity of the vote, underscoring the need for all parties to unite to protect the country against economic turmoil.

Acknowledging the MQM-P’s role in averting potential crises such as default and no-confidence motions, the premier hopeful expressed appreciation for their collaborative efforts. The MQM-P delegation commended Shehbaz’s inclusive leadership, highlighting his adeptness in fostering unity among various stakeholders over 16 months.

Expressing optimism, they hoped that under Shehbaz leadership, Pakistan and its people would overcome prevailing challenges.


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