Confusion prevails within PTI as top leader questions Senate candidates’ selection


ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Asad Qaiser raised doubts over the party’s list of candidates for the upcoming senate elections, saying he does not know if it was approved by party founder Imran Khan.

The PTI leader made these comments while speaking during an interview with a private news channel on Friday.

When asked if he was satisfied that genuine people were coming to the Senate and Khan had picked the candidates, Qaiser replied: “I have no clue if Imran Khan approved it or not. I don’t want to comment on it.

“I know the names of candidates [for the senate] but I cannot say if Khan approved them,” he added.

He added that PTI leader Omer Sarfraz Cheema is a stalwart who has made many sacrifices for the party and he has a right to get a senate ticket.

Qaiser’s comments came amid rifts among top party leaders and differences in opinion regarding major decisions including making an alliance with the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) after February 8 elections.

The party had decided to join SIC after elections to claim the seats reserved for women and minorities. However, PTI leader Sher Afzal Marwat on Thursday claimed that his party lost over 80 seats by making wrong decisions.

He said the decision to withdraw from forging an electoral alliance with Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Shirani (JUI-Shirani) and later striking a deal with Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf-Nazriati (PTI-N) dealt a major blow to the party.

Moreover, Marwat said the second biggest mistake was allying with Majlis Wahdat-e-Muslimeen (MWM) to secure reserved seats. The PTI leader claimed that they had to ally with SIC as they started receiving threats for making an electoral alliance with MWM.

Later on Friday, PTI senior leader Senator Barrister Ali Zafar said at first it was decided to join the MWM for reserved seats and next day, it was changed to opt for the SIC.

He said that the decision was changed the next day when some people, who met Imran Khan in Adiala jail, came out and said “now we will go with SIC”.

Zafar said that when he asked Khan about the development, the PTI founder said he had not changed the decision.

PTI candidates for Senate polls
PTI leader Mian Aslam Iqbal announced the party’s candidates for the Senate elections slated for April 02.

Sanam Javed will contest for the women’s seat while Dr Yasmin Rashid is a candidate for the technocrat seat in the Senate elections from Punjab.

Hamid Khan and Zulfi Bukhari are the candidates for the general seats while Cheema and Colonel (retd) Ejaz Hussain Minhas will also be contesting on the general seats.