Govt trying to pacify disgruntled Fazl

Senate acting chairman meets JUI-F chief in Islamabad

Rizwan Shehzad May 25, 2024
JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman appearing for an interview with a private digital media platform on Friday. SCREENGRAB


The ruling PML-N is attempting to pacify JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, who is seeking guarantees from the

PTI leadership before becoming part of an opposition alliance. This move is seen as an effort to prevent two former rivals, the PTI and the JUI-F, from joining forces.

Acting Senate Chairman Syedaal Khan Nasar, who belongs to the PML-N, met the JUI-F chief on Friday at the latter’s residence. They held a detailed discussion on the political situation and the key issues facing the country following the February 8 general elections.

Syedaal, who is acting as the Senate chairman because the incumbent chairman, Yousaf Raza Gilani, is performing duties as the acting president in the absence of President Asif Ali Zardari, visited Maulana Fazlur Rehman against the backdrop of the JUI-F’s rhetoric about the government and the establishment.

“A detailed discussion on important issues, including the political situation, took place during the meeting,” said an official statement issued after the meeting.

While talking to The Express Tribune, Syedaal said the political discussion was more of a general nature as he had gone to meet the Maulana due to his “personal relationship” with him. “The Maulana is an elder of the Nasar tribe, and the meeting was due for a long time.”

Read Fazl’s ‘allies’ snub his claim on no-trust move

Contrary to the official statement and Syedaal's remarks, JUI-F spokesperson Aslam Ghauri said different people from the government and opposition sides are regularly approaching the JUI-F.

The spokesperson said the government usually tells the JUI-F that the political and economic situation is not good, funds and investment are awaited, and political instability is already hurting the E. “[They tell us that in view of this] we should stay calm and give the government more time,” he said.

He said the JUI-F had no quarrel with the government, but the situation is that “our valuables were stolen and found in their house. We are now asking the government to hand over the culprits to us.”

He said the JUI-F’s movement against the stealing of the mandate would continue, and if the government came in its way, it would have to face the music.
Commenting on the JUI-F-PTI rapprochement, Aslam said: “It takes time to restore ties between two rivals, but a thaw in the relationship between the two sides is being witnessed.”

He added that the party was expected to make a final decision in its upcoming meetings and would likely formulate TORs for further cooperation with the PTI.

Nevertheless, Aslam said the JUI-F wants other parties to come to its support rather than the other way around. Referring to the party’s participation in the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) alliance, he said the JUI-F has learned its lessons from previous experiences.

He said the JUI-F’s movement aims to restore the stolen mandate as it believes that people do not repose trust in the current assembly. The JUI-F’s agenda is simple: the country should be run as per the law and the Constitution, and elections should be free, fair, and transparent, he said.

The official statement from the Senate said Syedaal expressed good wishes for Fazl, praised his political acumen, and said he would continue taking guidance from him. "The political services of Maulana are not hidden from anyone.

He is a wise politician with political insight and political consciousness," it said.

They also discussed the overall situation in Balochistan. The Maulana congratulated Syedaal on assuming charge as the deputy chairman of the Senate, it added.


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