Pagaro plans to move EC to bar others from using PML’s name
KARACHI: Pir Pagaro claimed on Saturday his Pakistan Muslim League (Functional) was the real PML and he would move the Election Commission to bar others from using the PML’s name.
The PML (F) chief said this after former prime minister Mir Zafarullah Jamali met him here in Kingri House. Earlier, Mr Jamali had one-on-one meeting with Pir Pagara on May 3 and this time he was accompanied by his son Faridullah Jamali.
Pir Pagaro hinted that Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain would not continue as the PML president. “The Muslim League will stay, but Shujaat will not. We will be there,” he said. He said now President Musharraf would talk to me on PML affairs.
He said Mr Jamali would soon get an important position, but he asked journalists not to disturb Mr Jamali. He urged journalists to give importance to what President Musharraf said about future of the country, instead of listening to Federal Information Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed. On the possibility of imposition of martial law, he said: “At present itself we are living under martial law.”
“Local bodies elections will not be held because my name is not enrolled in the voters’ list,” he said in his characteristic style.
He said it was up to President Musharraf whom he chose between Benazir Bhutto and Asif Zardari for talks.
He claimed he backed Sindh Chief Minister Arbab Ghulam Rahim on the advice of President Musharraf, not of General Yousuf’s. He was of the view that the National Assembly lacked its importance because it lacked quorum and the house would continue till the president made payments from the exchequer for its continuation. Pir Pagaro’s statement reflected differences within the ruling PML, which was named the unified PML after reunification of five factions of the PML and merger of the SDA, Millat Party and National People’s Party (NPP) that were allied in the defunct National Alliance.
Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi of the NPP had earlier denied joining the PML, and the chief of his own faction of the SDA, Imtiaz Shaikh, has been sacked as provincial revenue minister.
Pir Pagaro has not made clear if he will seek disqualification of Chaudhry Shujaat as party chief or de-registration of the unified PML. Chaudhry Shujaat was president of his PML (Quaid-e-Azam) before the reunification and mergers.
Mr Jamali, however, denied that he had been assigned a political task. “I am not a taskmaster. I talk to President Musharraf on national security and stability when I visit Rawalpindi,” he said.
Answering a question, he said there had been no deal between the government and the PPP, but dialogue had been going on between the two. “President Musharraf will take such a decision with regard to the PPPP or other political parties as will be in the national interest. “We are with the president and we will remain with him,” Mr Jamali said.