In a bid to make sure their candidates do not change loyalties after the elections, Pakistan Peoples Party has asked its members, contesting the elections on provincial and National Assembly seats, to tender in their ‘advanced resignations’. These resignations can be submitted on their behalf by the party in case of ‘disloyalty’ or ‘violation of party discipline’ to the speaker of the assemblies.
According to sources, all the nominees have given their undertaking to PPP chairperson, parliamentarian Makhdoom Amin Fahim, who can submit their resignation if need be. Members of the party told The Express Tribune that they have been told to follow the discipline of the PPP, otherwise strict action can be taken against them.
“If I am found disloyal to the party or involved in any activity against the party discipline, I will have no moral ground to be a member of the party and will tender my resignation,” states the undertaking.
Dr Sikandar Mandhro, a senior parliamentarian who is contesting the elections from Badin, told The Express Tribune that this practice was not new and even during Benazir Bhutto’s tenure, members submitted such an undertaking. “This is just formality. Legally, the undertaking has no weight because as per rules and procedure of the Sindh Assembly, the resignation of any member cannot be accepted unless he or she writes the application in front of the speaker, citing a valid reason for the resignation,” said Mandhro, adding that if a member changes his party, action cannot be taken against him on the basis of the undertaking. “The 18 Amendment gives party leaders power to take action against any member changing loyalty under the Political Parties Act,” he added.
Meanwhile, internal rifts between the PPP leaders on seat allotment in Kamber Shahdadkot has led the party to constitute a committee comprising PPP Sindh President Syed Qaim Ali Shah and former local bodies minister, Agha Siraj Durrani.
A meeting presided over by Faryal Talpur, sister of President Asif Ali Zardari, was reportedly held at Jillani House (residence of Qaim Ali Shah). The meeting was informed about the differences between PPP leader, Nadir Magsi, and nominee Sardar Chandio seat PS 42 in Kamber Shahdadkot. The party has allotted the ticket to Sardar Chandio, chief of Chandio tribe, but his rival Nadir Magsi has fielded an independent candidate, Sardar’s cousin Shahnawaz Chandio, on the same seat.
PPP allotted national assembly seat, NA 206, and provincial assembly seat, PS (40), to Magsi brothers, Amir Magsi and Nadir Magsi, in Kamber Shahdadkot district but the latter was disqualified over the issue of dual nationality.
The party has nominated Sardar Chandio, who was earlier affiliated with PML-Q, on PS 42 (Warrah) but is being publicly opposed by the Magsi group.
According to sources, the party leadership has directed Qaim Ali Shah to visit the area and resolve the matter as soon as possible. “My father used to contest the election on NA 206, the party ticket for which now has been allotted to Amir Magsi,” Sardar Chandio told The Express Tribune. “I initially objected but later accepted the party’s decision. They [Magsi] should also show the same spirit and support me in the elections.”
Published in The Express Tribune, April 17th, 2013.
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