PPP’s Senator Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar on Wednesday said that the party “should not have obtained votes from BAP (Balochistan Awami Party” to have Yousaf Raza Gillani be appointed as the Leader of the Opposition in the Senate.
Khokhar said that the move to take votes from a government-aligned party, in his view, “harmed the PPP’s ideological foundations”.
The PPP leader went on to say that the recent decisions taken by the Pakistan Democratic Movement alliance of the Opposition “did not leave a good impression on the inflation-weary public”. He said that the “in-fighting” within PDM strengthened the position of the “highly unpopular government”.
Khokhar further said that the PDM parties are “weak” in their narrative regarding mass resignations from assemblies and should not have laid “unnecessary emphasis” on such a move, whereas the PPP is “weak” in its stance regarding the Leader of the Opposition in the Senate position.
He said that if the party is looking to regain its voter base from other provinces, it will have to focus on “politics for the people” rather than “power politics”.
The PPP Senator expressed the hope that in the upcoming meeting of the party’s Central Executive Committee, there will be priority given to reviewing these observations and formulating a plan of action.
“The right to a difference in opinion is a democratic right,” Khokhar said, adding: “I hope my views will be taken keeping in mind the same.”
Last Friday, the PPP — seemingly unable to arrive at an amicable resolution to a dispute with other PDM parties over who should get the Senate opposition leader’s seat — had rounded 30 senators and gone ahead to secure the position for its candidate, Yousaf Raza Gillani, without the PDM’s blessing.
The numbers comprised 21 senators from the PPP itself, 2 senators from the Awami National Party, 1 senator of the Jamaat-i-Islami, 2 independents from FATA and a group of 4 ‘independents’ led by Senator Dilawar Khan that had broken away from the Balochistan Awami Party to support Gillani’s candidature.
More to follow.