Jamat-e-Islami turns its guns on PPP, asks ECP to act impartially

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JI leader Naeem-ur-Rehman talking to the media on January 17, 2023. Screengrab of a Facebook video.
JI leader Naeem-ur-Rehman talking to the media on January 17, 2023. Screengrab of a Facebook video.

  • Naeem ur Rehman says impossible for PPP to win majority in Karachi.
  • Says JI will have its mayor in Karachi. 
  • Says JI chief Sirajul Haq will visit Karachi on Jan 20.

Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) Karachi President Naeem ur Rehman claimed that the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) will not be able to attain a majority in Karachi even if it spent a hundred years trying to do so as its conduct is anti-Karachi.

"Regardless of others' vain efforts to prove their majority, the JI has won the local government elections in Karachi with a majority," said Rehman, while speaking to the media at the Idara Noor-e-Haq on Tuesday.

"They made us face defeat so that the PPP wins. And, the PPP played all this game in collusion with the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP)," he claimed.

Chief Election Commissioner Sikander Sultan Raja will have to prove that he has been impartial, he said, adding the ECP is being held hostage by a few people.

The PPP is celebrating after stealing the mandate of the people of Karachi, he said. However, he added that the JI would not allow the mandate of Karachittes be taken away.

Also speaking on Geo News programme ‘Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Kay Saath’, Rehman said that his party wanted a consensus decision on the mayor’s slot and next city government, but talks would be held with potential allies, including the PPP, after his party’s complaints about rigging in the local government elections had been addressed and all results notified by the election commission.

He called upon the PPP to give up its undemocratic attitude. He alleged that the ECP had been biased as returning officers (ROs) altered the results under the nose of the election commissioner. 

"We don't want announcements. We want concrete steps. If the Election Commission can't do anything, let us know," he said.

Under the circumstances, he asserted, the chief election commissioner should have shown up in Karachi. JI will block the entire country's highways if necessary, Rehman warned. 

The JI leader said the people of Karachi wanted resolution of their problems and his party would therefore want a consensus decision on the mayor’s slot.

Rehman said the mayor would definitely belong to the JI as the number of his party’s seats was increasing, with two seats which had earlier been given to the PPP and the PTI were given to the JI after corrections in the results by the election commission.

He said the PTI had offered unconditional support to the JI, and the two parties could form a coalition city government.

He added that the JI wanted the resolution of its complaints about seven more seats, after which it would emerge as the largest party in Karachi. He maintained that the corrections in the results justified his party’s demand that all controversial results be looked into and actual winners announced.

Rehman said that the Jamaat was protesting not only in Karachi but across the country over the rigging in the local government polls. He said a protest was still going on outside the office of the district returning officer of District West. 

Rehman said that it was the decision of the people of Karachi that the Jamaat should win from here as it had emerged as the largest party in the city. 

People of Karachi expect a Jamaat man to be mayor of Karachi and the party will make it happen, he said. "It is incumbent upon us to take the city along with us as its people have supported us by letting go of their political affiliations," he said.