PML-N sharpens its knives

Published: January 12, 2012

Central Executive Committee also recommends en masse resignation by PML-N members in NA and a countrywide long march. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

ISLAMABAD: In a bid to make most of the precarious situation, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) will be weighing all options before opposition parties today (Friday) to formulate a grand anti-government strategy — possibly a vote of no confidence against the country’s premier.

The three options that came up during PML-N’s meeting at the Punjab House on Thursday were a) Vote of no confidence against the prime minister b) resignations from assemblies and c) street protests.

PML-N leaders said that their party would try to gather all parties to pile up pressure on the government to step down and announce early elections. But opting for any one of these or a combination of them will now rest on the feedback and consultation from other parties.

The PML-N, which has long been considering itself ‘the government in waiting’, is now accosting other opposition parties, groups and individuals to converge on ‘minimum-possible common agenda’ against the ruling party.

Those who have been approached and invited for a luncheon meeting today (Friday) with Nawaz Sharif at the Punjab House include Maulana Fazlur Rehman’s JUI-F, Aftab Ahmed Khan Sharpao’s PPP-S, Jamat-e-Islami, Mir Hasil Bizinjo and Mehmood Khan Ackahzai’s nationalist parties from Balochistan that sit on the opposition benches.

In the next phase, PML-N intends to approach the parties, groups and individuals in the ruling alliance and Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).  The parliamentary party and the Central Executive Committee (CEC) of the PML-N have mandated Leader of Opposition Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, Sardar Mehtab Abbasi and Iqbal Zafar Jhagra – who was also appointed as the new secretary general of PML-N – to make the initial contacts.

Vote of no confidence

While the PML-N leaders unanimously converged at the meeting, it was Shahid Khaqan Abbasi who floated the idea of brining a no-trust motion in the National Assembly against Yousaf Raza Gilani, sources told The Express Tribune. Khawja Asif was present to second him; however, the party remained ambivalent whether to execute the strategy single-handedly since it lacks the numbers.

“We have only 90 members and had we decided to go for a no-trust motion without taking other parties into confidence, the move would surely have backfired since its failure would mean a vote of confidence for the prime minister,” PML-N’s MNA from Islamabad Dr Tariq Fazal Chaudhry remarked.

As per rules, once a no trust motion fails, a new cannot be moved in the next six months against the leader of the house.

Khawaja Saad Rafiq and some others proposed that the party should opt for street protests and quit the assemblies. However, this option was not viable since the PML-N feared that by resigning from assemblies it would leave the field open for the government.

The leader of opposition in the National Assembly was of the view that immediate focus should be paid to annul the government’s plans of cementing its grip through parliament by approaching other parties and groups.

However, it is still unclear whether this political strategy would go beyond the short-term agenda of getting a vote of no confidence against Gilani or would it lead towards a grand opposition alliance.

“Of the options that the CEC has suggested, Mian Nawaz will announce his final decision within two or three days,” PML-N leader Ahsan Iqbal said suggesting that the party would be looking for feedback from other opposition parties.

“Bringing change through fresh elections is inevitable. But unconstitutional change is not acceptable”, he said.

PML-N’s CEC also appointed former Sindh governor Mamnoon Hussain and Nawab Changaiz Khan Marri, the elder son of Nawab Mir Khair Bux Marri, as senior vice presidents of the party.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 13th, 2012. 

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Reader Comments (37)

  • adeel759
    Jan 12, 2012 - 8:44PM

    Well, what do you expect from self-serving, politicking, self-defeating politicians of Pakistan.Mian Sahib wants to take advantage of the weak position of Govt Vs Military. i thought he has learned the lesson but he hasn’t. Recommend

  • adeel759
    Jan 12, 2012 - 8:49PM

    Good Job Mian Sahib, back to square one, politicking of 90s. You pull their leg they pull yours, and macho men enjoy.

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  • Khawlah
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:02PM

    Thanks Nawaz Shareef for the politics of 90s. This is what we can expect it from you. When tomorrow in your turn don’t expect that PPP will not do the same to you. Again, I must say it is a victory to Army and Undemocratic forces while a defeat to democratic forces. This is not what you have promised with BB shaheed in Charter of Democracy. You have to respect the mandate given to PPP by the people of Pakistan. If you don’t do this, Army will use another forces against you in future!

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  • Ahmed
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:02PM

    I think it’s a good move, PTI should also join along if a Long March situation is created. @Adeel; the politics of the 90′s was better than this corrupt Zardari Raj.

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  • Usman Chatta
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:06PM

    I swear to God, this guy wants to go on a “countryside long march” every time something however minor irks him off- must be getting pretty tired now. Quite obvious he is just trying to take advantage of the already battered government’s position. Next day, he’ll be ranting on about how the PPP and PML-N are brothers who should work together to save democracy.

    The only genuinely honest politician in the country at the moment with no blot on his reputation is Imran Khan.

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  • jai zardari
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:08PM

    defeat is looking him into his eyes.Nawaz is watching any chance of becoming PM just passing by so he has come to his old rough ways
    he os finished as leader

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  • Jan 12, 2012 - 9:09PM

    No-confidence motion is a democratic move. The other two are undemocratic. If NS makes friendship with Chaudries of Gujrat he can succeed easily.

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  • Channakya
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:14PM

    If at all PMLN brings a No Confidence motion, it will help the govt.of YRG because the motion will most likely FAIL !Recommend

  • F Khan
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:19PM

    by the time LION will wake up to think if this could be done or not the opportunity would slip away….this has been pmln biggest problem… TIMING.

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  • Abbas from the US
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:26PM

    @jai zardari:

    It is a political move, he has to stay relevent to Punjab’s voters or will end up losing seats to TIP. If the weaker links in the coalition are promised a better deal than what currently the PPP can offer the result will be new elections. But it could end up with fewer seats in the Senate for PML(N) than currently they can hope for if the Senate elections go forward on the currentlly scheduled March 3 date.

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  • Jan 12, 2012 - 9:37PM

    Elections should be held in the country otherwise this government will do unimaginable things to Pakistan. May Allah save Pakistan.

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  • Ch Allah Daad
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:39PM

    Mian Sahib, Please tolerate this government for two more months. Immediately after upper house elections, force this government to bring neutral caretaker government and hold early elections. Any other move by you will empower only anti democracy forces. These forces do not want to empower people of Pakistan to change their rulers through vote.. They want to keep crucial right with themselves. I am your supporter but I want to see this government replaced with vote only and that will be the best day of our lives.

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  • jai zardari
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:41PM

    @abbas ,sir mr nawaz is thick and impatient
    the only thing he had to do to win the next election was to keep quiet,maintain his dignity and and present his programme to the people
    but as they say chor chori se jayee magar heraj phele se na jayee

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  • ishtiaer hussain
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:47PM

    Welcome to the politics of 1990s. Welcome to another lost decade.

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  • dv sikka
    Jan 12, 2012 - 10:12PM

    This situation is very bad for the people of Pakistan. Nawaz should use his influence to bring about a compromise between the two parties. A no confidence move will escalate the trouble. Please do not let this becoming a violent confrontation.

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  • Jan 12, 2012 - 10:13PM

    he can be successful If he convinces Ch Shujaat

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  • Imran
    Jan 12, 2012 - 10:37PM

    Mian Jee is suffering from Senate Phobia.

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  • AnisAqeel
    Jan 12, 2012 - 10:37PM

    It is a good move, if anyone feels to impeach then do it the right way instead of weaving conspiracies (like memogate, plane high jacking, election rigging, national security etc.) and bringing in dictatorship and when you fail then retreat and let the cycle complete. We are heading towards real democracy and blocking the ‘mighty’ to abandon their treasonous designs although they will not retreat but just two democratically completed cycles will bring us to the path of other civilized nations.Recommend

  • mohammad naeem
    Jan 12, 2012 - 10:38PM

    pml-n =pakistan Memo league!

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  • Attif Abbas
    Jan 12, 2012 - 10:56PM

    Zardari-Gilani cant rule without the help of Nawaz and here he is helping them again against the allies ANP-MQM-PML-Q ,Who are not willing to repose the confidence vote.In case of this motion they have to.

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  • Shahbaz Khan
    Jan 12, 2012 - 11:00PM

    We had high hopes from NS who, after BB’s assasination, was the only remaining politician of national stature. He, however, displayed very little political acumen and severely damaged his credibility. From flip-flopping on election boycott to joining AZ government to “saving the system”, his policies exhibit utter political incompetence and lack of foresight. We are still not clear what his stance is on various issues, especially when it comes to early election. His actions contradict his statements; rather than submitting his party’s resignations from the assemblies and starting a public agitation campaign, he is content on issuing statements which are often contradictory.

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  • Azmat Ali
    Jan 12, 2012 - 11:16PM

    Good move… All of these options are democratic…. y not all the opposition should unite.. But not.. Imran want his own Tsunami.. this is what PTI Lacks and so as Imran … Negotiating and talking …. Quraishi should do compel PTI to Join Hands with Opposition…
    Nawaz Go,,, this is the time to end up this governmmnet.
    When PML dont push the government u say Friendly Opposition and When they use these like options you r saying 90′s Politics….. Amazing!!!

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  • Farhan Khan
    Jan 12, 2012 - 11:34PM

    Let PPP complete its tenure so that the next Govt will be able to do that too. Pull their legs now and be ready to be pulled in FUTURE. System must keep running. Thats the first Rule for Evolution.

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  • Kashif Iqbal
    Jan 12, 2012 - 11:43PM

    I am unable to understand the mentality of the people commenting on this excellent news. Few days before everyone here wanted PML-N to resign from the aseembly; now these people putting the tag of 90′s politics.

    I think this is the best decision so far from PML-N against this corrupt and incompetent government. People are just fed up because of this so-called elected democracy.

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  • Kashif Iqbal
    Jan 12, 2012 - 11:44PM

    If PML-N doesn’t speak against government, then Nawaz Sharif is friendly opposition. Now this friendly opposition is taking action against incompetent government; and people say they are playing dirty politics.. wow. PTI guys need to grow up.

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  • yasir
    Jan 13, 2012 - 12:01AM

    this is not 90′s Mian Sahab when U n PPP used to pull eachother’s leg to get the chair and there was no one to stop u both…. It ‘s 2012 now. Imran Khan will pull both of u with the help of the youth and common people and will make Pakistan what it deserves to be
    ! inshaALLAH :)

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  • none
    Jan 13, 2012 - 12:03AM

    @Ahmed:
    a typical ppp hater….

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  • ishaq
    Jan 13, 2012 - 1:18AM

    Welcome to the 90′s.

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  • ali
    Jan 13, 2012 - 5:53AM

    Why are jiyalas so upset. No confidence is part of democracy. Italy and japan have elections every year due to corruption and govt. failure. This govt is corrupt and must be removed to make way for fresh elections.

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  • Bee
    Jan 13, 2012 - 9:29AM

    PML-N resigns from NA seats, PPP holds bye elections, Imran Khan sweeps PML-N constituencies. Would be good for IK to test his strength.

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  • Super pak
    Jan 13, 2012 - 9:58AM

    @Ch Allah Daad:
    Mian sahib doesn’t wait for your comments, or care about you. Threats is the only thing he got.

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  • Beatle
    Jan 13, 2012 - 10:43AM

    Vote of No Confidence(VNC)?? How un-wise even to discuss. According to 18th amendment, VNC motion must nominate alternative PM – meaning thereby to remove the incumbent PM and elect a new one in the very same motion. It was to avoid power vacuum. Do PML-N has the magic number of 177 in house. Last time I checked it was just 80, after considering resignations and “Naaraz” members. Its un-sane to even think that at this very moment Chaudhary Bros., MQM, FATA or ANP will stand by PML side.
    So they are only making fool of their ill-wills.

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  • Jan 13, 2012 - 10:55AM

    When PMLN waits for the PPP to complete its 5 year term it is called “Friendly Opposition” when they try to get rid of them it is called “Politics of the 90s”. What do we really want?

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  • kamran
    Jan 13, 2012 - 11:08AM

    @adeel759:
    Set your satisfaction level if PML-N not do this you said freiendlly opposition and if PML-N take aggressive stance against government you said its not fair to take advantage

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  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Jan 13, 2012 - 2:32PM

    There are 10 more month to go for the next Eid-ul-Azha to come.

    Why PML-N is sharpen its knives?

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  • A.Khan
    Jan 13, 2012 - 5:14PM

    Couldn’t they just make a grand progress plan for the country instead?

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  • salman
    Jan 14, 2012 - 12:10AM

    The biggest supporter of Zardari is once again trying to support present government while covertly trying to defame army and SC.

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