Former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has hinted at resigning as the secretary-general of the Pakistan Democratic Movement over the possibility of the Pakistan Peoples Party rejoining the opposition alliance.
The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and the PPP, two of the major parties of the PDM, developed differences over the appointment of Syed Yousuf Raza Gillani as the opposition leader in the Senate.
The PML-N had sought to appoint its own, but the PPP made the move without holding consultations with the PDM parties.
Gillani had defeated ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s Abdul Hafeez Shaikh to win the Islamabad seat in the upper house of parliament elections held in March this year.
While talking to the media after appearing before the accountability court on Tuesday, Abbasi said, “The PPP was asked for an explanation, but it tore the show-cause notice up. Read and reply, otherwise there is no room.”
The former prime minister said if the PPP becomes part of the opposition alliance again, the PDM “will have to find a new secretary-general”.
“I will not compromise on principles. Reservations remain on the issue of Senate elections.”
He clarified that no invitation had been sent to the PPP from the PDM’s constituent parties.
“Maulana Sahib (Fazlur Rehman] has clearly said that restore your confidence. Only those who will restore their confidence can rejoin the PDM,” Abbasi said.
In reply to Abbasi’s media talk, Pakistan Peoples Party Parliamentarians Vice President Senator Sherry Rehman “clearly and unequivocally” said, “The PPP will not explain its stance to any other political party.”
She said the only purpose of the meeting with the opposition leader was to activate the role of the opposition in parliament, refusing that they had requested to be included in the PDM.
She said that instead of fighting and harming each other, some elements of the opposition parties should first find out the PPP's position on the PDM.
On his PSO illegal hiring case, Abbasi said, “This case of NAB is continuing for the third year in a row.
“We have been demanding the installation of cameras during NAB investigations and court hearings so that the people can know what it is doing.”
He accused NAB of causing the most damage to the country.
He fired a broadside at the government, saying that the people are still suffering from inflation while the government is thinking of how to suppress the opposition.
“No one is willing to believe the government's claim on the 4% growth rate as the previous one is said to be above 3%.”
Separately, Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly and PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif and PDM President Maulana Fazlur Rehman discussed the political situation in the country and the future strategy.
Shehbaz met Fazl at his residence, inquired after his health and presented a bouquet of flowers.
According to sources, both the leaders decided to give a tough time to the government for the upcoming budget.
They said that Fazl informed Shehbaz about the decisions of the PDM regarding the PPP and the Awami National Party.
PML-N spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb, Ataullah Tarar, Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri, Maulana Asad Mahmood and Aslam Ghauri were in attendance.