PAKPATTAN/Islamabad - Former MNA Ahmed Raza Maneka announced on Saturday that he is quitting Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.

“I am bidding farewell to PTI,” he said during a news conference in Pakpattan. “I do not want to serve as a PTI worker anymore.”

Ahmed Raza was serving as the president of PTI’s Pakpattan chapter.

While expressing his reservations with the leadership of the party, Ahmed Raza said PTI Chairman Imran Khan would never meet any local leader whenever he would come to Pakpattan. The leadership is not aware of its team, the former MNA added. He added that other local leaders of the party have also decided to resign.

The Pakpattan leader said he would definitely contest the elections and would give his plan of action in a few days.

Ahmed Raza is the son of former federal minister Mian Ghulam Muhammad Maneka. He served as MNA from 2002-2007 and was also the chairperson of standing committee on cabinet during his tenure.

Earlier this month, musician Salman Ahmad announced on Twitter that he will no longer be supporting the PTI. However, soon after he reaffirmed his support for Imran.

Ahmad had expressed disappointment over TV anchor Amir Liaquat joining the party, but then said, “Although I’ve expressed my deep disappointment over Amir Liaquat still the only real option for 2018 election is Imran Khan and Naya Pakistan.”

NO NEGATIVE IMPACT ON PTI

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf in reaction to the departure of its party leader Ahmed Raza Maneka said that the development would cast little to no negative impact on the party as it is an organised and strong entity.

“He left the party due to personal reasons and he has never been an ideological politician. He always sided with the winning camp,” PTI Central Media Department said in a statement in Islamabad on Saturday, quoting Rao Naseem Hashim, Pakpattan-based PTI leader. Rao claimed that no councillor, no worker of the party endorsed Maneka’s decision and left the party along with the deserting politician. He held that Maneka was neither a contender for the party’s ticket nor he deserved it and added the PTI is as strong and united in Pakpattan as it was before his departure.