Khokhar Delays New Party to Dodge ‘Establishment’ Tag

Web DeskDecember 23, 2023
Khokhar Delays New Party to Dodge 'Establishment' Tag

Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar, a former PPP senator, has disclosed that the establishment of a new political party is being temporarily postponed to prevent the risk of being branded as “pro-establishment.” However, the plans are expected to resume following the general elections on February 8. In earlier events this year, Khokhar, along with former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and former Finance Minister Miftah Ismail, organized a series of seminars called ‘Reimagining Pakistan.’ The aim was to shed light on the current challenges facing the country and foster a consensus on the future course of action among all stakeholders.

Initially having no intentions of forming a political party, the trio reversed their decision in October, citing an “urgent need” for a new political entity in the country. Notable among the recently established parties are Jehangir Tareen’s Istehkam-i-Pakistan Party (IPP) and Pervez Khattak’s Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf Parliamentarians (PTI-P), both drawing members from the PTI. Aligning with Khokhar, Abbasi expressed concerns about acquiring a “pro-establishment” label if a party was created before elections, emphasizing that the opportunity for a new party would persist post-elections. In October, Khokhar had cautioned against the “pro-establishment” tag, acknowledging the lingering apprehensions rooted in the country’s political history.

Read more:Elections 2024, Pakistan’s Electoral Mystery

Khokhar clarified that Miftah Ismail hasn’t retired from politics and plans to join him and Abbasi after the elections, noting Ismail’s inherent political drive. Expressing optimism about the trio reuniting post-elections, Khokhar observed the creation of a favorable environment for PML-N’s Nawaz Sharif to secure a fourth term as prime minister, particularly as the PTI weakens. He highlighted the Election Commission of Pakistan’s decision to deny PTI its ‘bat’ symbol and commented on Nawaz Sharif’s public image, citing swift releases in legal cases and alleged favoritism in Punjab. Khokhar questioned the purpose of elections if major decisions were made behind closed doors, emphasizing the Supreme Court’s commitment to the scheduled February 8 election date.

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