ISLAMABAD - Pakistan People’s Party was yet to receive formal invitation for participation in the Multi Party Conference organised by Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal Chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman today (Thursday) to devise some joint protest strategy against the alleged elections’ rigging in the general elections.
When asked sources in the party confirmed that so far they were not formally invited to the MPC called for today by MMA Chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman so the PPP was not constituted any delegation to attend the event.
These sources, however, did not rule out some top level contact between Maulana Fazlur Rehman with Asif Ali Zardari and verbal invitation for the event wherein the opposition parties would devise protest strategy against PTI, fielding of joint candidates for the slot of Speaker and Deputy Speaker and then finally for the elections of Leader of House in National Assembly.
Meanwhile, Pakistan People’s Party central leaders met here Wednesday night and discussed the party’s future course of action particularly its role in the formation of some alliance with other political parties to give tough time to Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaaf to form government at the centre.
Some insiders in the party informed The Nation that PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari was not in a mood to go tough on PTI as planned by the other parties including Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal component parties.
Sources aware of the developments taking place on this front PPP would not join any move to form government at the centre and would not become part of any such move by other opposition parties in the Parliament.
PPP central leader Qamar Zaman Kira was categorical in his statement that Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz with 64 members in the National Assembly should get hold of Leader of Opposition slot.
MMA Chief Maualna Fazlur Rehman, who was earlier adamant that opposition parties must not take oath in protest of massive rigging but PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari prevailed and convinced other political parties to drop this idea and finally it was agreed that opposition parties would join the federal and provincial legislatures.
Some senior PPP leaders desired not to be named informed The Nation that they would not enter into the politics of confrontation and leg-pulling as such moves on the part of politicians would endanger the system and they would not be part of any activity detrimental to the democratic order in the country.
They said that PPP would do issue based politics and would adopt the legal and constitutional means to get their reservations against the massive rigging in the elections resolved.
Similarly, PPP would not become part of tug of war between PML-N and PTI for securing the government in Punjab as party leaders were clear on the point and would stay out of it sources added. On the issue of adopting some joint protest strategy PPP would stand with the opposition but at the same time they would not become part of destabilising the democratic order in the country.
PPP REJECTS ECP’S CLAIM OF
Pakistan People’s Party on Wednesday rejected the assertion of ECP that the voting process was above suspicion and that the people exercised their right to vote in a free environment without any complaints.
"Hollow claims and even more hollow explanations are worse than the flawed voting exercise", said PPPP Secretary General ex-senator Farhatullah Babar in a statement while reacting to the claims of the Election Commission.
The claim that ECP ensured "swift access of people to all electoral process" is belied by the breakdown of Result Transmission System (RTS) on one hand and inexplicable delay in transmission of results physically on the other, he said.
Manipulation in the past was believed to have taken place at the time of consolidation of results in offices of Returning Officers after poll results had been sent by polling officers.
To minimise the role of RO this year, for the first time, the RTS was introduced so that polling officers directly transmitted the results to the ECP, he said.
The RTS however worked for some time on July 25 after the end of polling time until a sudden announcement said it had collapsed and polling officers were asked to submit results to ROs as in the past.
The role of Returning Officers that has always been mired in controversies in the past was thus revived, he said and asked at what time the RTS collapsed and why? Why was no instant revival system or back up mechanism put in place?. If the collapse claim was false who decided to make the RTS dysfunctional through a fake announcement and for what purpose?
He said that NADRA has been designing special transmission systems for banks, passport offices and money transactions services both nationally and internationally and none failed. Why this particular transmission system devised by it failed irreversibly, he asked, adding “answers to these questions will make all pieces of the jigsaw puzzle fall into place”.
The claim that national and international observers had endorsed fairness of the polls and that polling stations were not taken over by state agencies is not the whole truth, he said.
First, far from giving a clean chit the observers have expressed serious concerns over reshaping of the political environment ahead of the polls.
Secondly, if indeed the result transmission system was deliberately made dysfunctional there was no need for direct takeover of the polling stations by the state agencies, he said.