ISLAMABAD - Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) is sticking to its demand of elevating PPP chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari to the prime minister’s post after the February 8 elections resulted in a split mandate leaving no party in a strong position to form the federal government. Even the PPP and the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) together fall short of the simple majority and will need some smaller parties or independents to join their ranks for a comfortable standing.
Amid this situation, the PPP with 54 general seats on the National Assembly has become a force needed by the PML-N to keep the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf-led bloc away from power.
PPP supremo Asif Ali Zardari is playing well, citing the PPP’s importance in formation of the federal government.
Yesterday, PPP leader Faisal Karim Kundi said that PPP should not accept less than the prime minister’s slot.
“As Central Secretary Information of PPP, I propose that if Bilawal Bhutto Zardari doesn’t secure the prime minister’s position in a stable coalition alliance, we should opt to sit on opposition benches. Let’s prioritize our party and continue serving the people from that position,” he posted on X.
He added: “Kudos to Chairman PPP Bilawal Bhutto Zardari for his tireless dedication and remarkable campaign efforts! His vision for a stable Pakistan resonates with the people. The Pakistan People’s Party is ready to shape a brighter future for our nation.”
PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif met Bilawal yesterday to underscore the “importance of political unity” for the welfare of Pakistan’s citizens, pledging to address public expectations and prioritize economic relief measures.
The PML-N leader expressed confidence to form the next government, hinting at the concept of a ‘unity government’ that respects the mandates of all parties and independent candidates.
The situation underscores the challenges facing political players as they navigate the complexities of post-election scenarios, with the goal of achieving much-needed political stability in Pakistan.
With both the parties eyeing positions of power in the Centre, Punjab, and Balochistan, their approaches are characterized by caution and planning.
Today (February 12) serves as a pivotal moment in this unfolding narrative, as PPP leader Asif Ali Zardari orchestrates crucial meetings in Islamabad and Lahore to delve into the intricacies of their proposed coalition.
In contrast to the swift formation of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) in 2022, the current negotiations are expected to be more comprehensive and thorough.
PML-N spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb said the initial consultations have taken place between the PML-N and the PPP, emphasizing the need to solicit input from both parties in crafting a coalition agreement.
Amid these deliberations, the PPP maintains a reserved stance, opting to withhold premature disclosure of its strategies.
PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari reiterates the party’s commitment to constructive politics, underscoring its presence across all provinces and its crucial role in potential government formations.
The PML-N is pressing the PPP to accept the president’s position along with several other key slots and support its candidate for the Prime Minister’s office.
The PPP is expected to decide on the matter today (February 12) and share the outcome of the PPP Central Executive Committee meeting with the PML-N in the next round of talks. For now, the PPP is sticking to its demand to elect Bilawal as the PM.