PPP demands timely elections, level-playing field

Faizan Bangash
News Desk
PPP Central Executive Committee meeting underway under chairmanship of President PPP Asif Ali Zardari and Chairman Pakistan Peoples Party Bilawal Bhutto Zardari. — X@MediaCellPPP
PPP Central Executive Committee meeting underway under chairmanship of President PPP Asif Ali Zardari and Chairman Pakistan Peoples Party Bilawal Bhutto Zardari. — X@MediaCellPPP

  • PPP CEC asks ECP to announce poll dates immediately.
  • Latif Khosa served notice for speaking against party's stance.
  • Reservations over some actions of caretaker govt: Faisal Kundi. 

LAHORE: The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Central Executive Committee (CEC) has voiced concern over what it called efforts to push the party to the wall, adding that the party should be provided with a level-playing field, The News reported Friday.

While the CEC meeting, chaired by PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari at Bilawal House in Lahore, underlined the delimitation of constituencies must be done if there is a need for them, it demanded that the upcoming general polls be conducted within the stipulated constitutional period. 

The PPP's CEC further asked the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to announce poll dates immediately.

During the meeting, concerns were voiced over the ban on development projects in Sindh while they were being inaugurated in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The PPP also voiced serious concerns over the grim economic situation in the country and termed elections key to solutions of all the core issues. 

Bilawal, on the occasion, announced that another sitting of the PPP CEC would take place on Friday (today).  

The PPP chairman also directed the party leaders to gear up for a mass contact campaign and appointed Chaudhry Manzoor as the focal person for the affairs related to the flood-hit population of Punjab. 

The CEC meeting was attended by former president Asif Ali Zardari, former prime ministers Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Syed Khursheed Shah, Syed Murad Ali Shah, Farooq H Naek, Qamar Zaman Kaira, Rana Farooq Saeed Khan, Syed Hassan Murtaza, Faisal Karim Kundi, Shazia Marri and others.

However, two stalwarts — Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan and Sardar Latif Khan Khosa — did not attend. 

On the recommendation of Punjab leadership, a show cause was also served to Latif Khosa for his statements against the party’s stance.

Later, talking to the media, Shazia Marri said the PPP wants the polls to be conducted at the earliest so that the country comes out of uncertainty but only the ECP can give a date, as stressed by the party in the last meeting. 

"We are saying that delimitation should be done if it needs to be. We are hopeful that the election commission will conduct the polls soon," she added, adding the PPP should be provided a level playing field.

She said President Arif Alvi apparently seemed to be playing on both sides of the wicket. His letter on the date of fresh elections was being reviewed, she added. She said the PPP believed in law and the Constitution, and as per the legal experts, the president cannot give a date for elections.

"An attempt to create confusion on the election has been made," Marri said while referring to President Arif Alvi’s letter to the chief election commissioner, suggesting November 6 as the date for the polls while also asking the electoral body to consult the superior court.

She further said the president’s letter would also be discussed in the CEC meeting and the decisions taken there will be shared after the meeting. She said the CEC today (Friday) will consider the situation after a meeting with the ECP. 

Marri said that it does not matter if the party’s former ally, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PMLN), continues to put blame on others. “The PMLN can keep blaming, it does not matter,” she said.

While briefing the media, Faisal Karim Kundi said the PPP had reservations over some actions of the caretaker government, particularly the one concerning discrimination against the development projects of Sindh as compared to Punjab and KP.