LAHORE: In a surprise switch of loyalties, the former media coordinator of Pervez Musharraf’s All-Pakistan Muslim League has decided to join the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party.
“A two-party system is entrenched in the country, which is why we have decided to go back to our parent party,” Fawad, who made the decision along with his uncle Chaudhry Shahbaz, told The Express Tribune. A formal announcement will be made in the next few days, he said. His uncle Shahbaz is currently the APML’s chief coordinator.
Fawad had resigned as the media coordinator of the APML in January, leading to rumours that he may be defecting to the Imran Khan-led Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, which has recently welcomed several political heavyweights.
Fawad and Shahbaz have already met PPP co-chairman President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Gilani to amicably settle their long-standing issues with the PPP.
“My uncle Chaudhry Altaf, a member of the PPP, remained governor of the Punjab from 1993 to 1997; so our roots lie with the PPP,” Fawad said.
When asked about reports of his negotiations with the PTI, he referred to the example of Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid dissident Marvi Memon saying that she had joined PML-Nawaz as she is aware of the country’s political scenario.
But, he said, he had preferred PPP over PML-N as he believed it was a more liberal, visionary and progressive party.
Fawad’s constituency is Jhelum district where, in 2002, his uncle won a seat on a PML-Q ticket and served as a federal minister. Both will contest on PPP’s tickets in the next general elections.
Musharraf and Fawad fell apart when the former announced that he will be returning to Pakistan, despite the latter’s opposition. Fawad had said that, as the party’s media coordinator, he will not be able to defend the APML should Musharraf back out of his commitment.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 9th, 2012.