In yet another race between PML-N and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) to swell their numbers, PML-N won out this time with politician Irfanullah Marwat, who is to formally announce that he has joined the party on Tuesday (today).
Marwat is currently heading the Punjabi Pakhtun Ittehad (PPI) and claims to have thousands of supporters and 37 offices in Karachi.
Marwat met with Sharif on Monday evening and finalised his decision. He told The Express Tribune that he was joining the PML-N because he felt that the party had the best solutions to the crises Pakistan is facing right now, including in the economy. “I also thought it was a very bold decision by Nawaz Sharif to approach the Supreme Court in the Memogate case,” he said.
Marwat said that he had also been approached by the PTI but felt that the party’s proposals were “hollow”. “They say they want to bring a revolution but the people who are joining their party have served in the government for five or six years. They say the government is corrupt, but then when a minister from that government joins PTI, he isn’t corrupt. This seems like a very duplicitous stance to me.”
He said that PPI supporters would also be joining the PML-N. Marwat believes he was approached by the PML-N because his inclusion would help the party revamp itself in Karachi, which it has neglected in the past few years.
He was last elected to the Sindh Assembly in 2002 but has previously served in the Sindh government as a minister and an advisor. His father-in-law is the late former president Ghulam Ishaq Khan. Marwat was also implicated in a gang rape case in 1991, when a victim held him responsible for ordering the rape. Marwat was then advisor for home affairs.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 20th, 2011.