Divisions appeared in the opposition’s ranks on Friday over their demand of seeking Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s resignation following the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) report.
Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) and Awami National Party (ANP) did not agree with their colleagues in the opposition while wishing to wait till the outcome of the Supreme Court’s verdict in this case.
The meeting of the combined opposition was held here at the Parliament House in the Chamber of Opposition Leader in the National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah and was attended by PTI leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Opposition Leader in the Senate Aitzaz Ahsan, MQM (Pakistan) Dr Farooq Sattar, Amir Jamaat-e-Islami Senator Sirajul Haq, PML-Q leader Chaudhry Pervez Elahi, QWP leader Aftab Sherpao, ANP’s Ghulam Ahmed Bilour, AML’s Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed and other representatives of the opposition parties.
Though all the major opposition parties were on the same page for demanding Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s resignation, but Aftab Ahmed Khan Sherpao and Ghulam Bilour did not agree to the demand and were of the opinion that they should wait till the outcome of the Supreme Court verdict on it. The opposition decided to use the Senate where they are in majority to move a resolution for seeking Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s resignation. Talking to newsmen after the meeting of combined opposition, PPP’s Syed Khursheed Shah said except the ANP and QWP, all opposition parties are committed to demanding Nawaz Sharif's resignation.
“The JIT has exposed three generations of the Sharif family, and the nation is demanding of the prime minister to resign,” he said. “Democracy should prevail and the PM should resign.” He said all the opposition parties are on the same page for the continuation of the democratic process and that was the reason we are calling for the resignation of the prime minister. He said we will stand by the Supreme Court whatever decision it gives in the case.
PTI’s Shah Mehmood Qureshi said the opposition has authorised Khursheed Shah to call the NA session whenever he deems fit. He said our bone of contention is not with any party, but anyone against whom evidence is found should be sent home. “Democratic forces are united, and we will support all decisions of the Supreme Court,” he said.
Amir Jammat-e-Islami Senator Sirajul Haw said no one should be above the accountability, and we want accountability for all. “The ultrasound conducted by the JIT calls for the resignation of the prime minister,” he added.
Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed said that the opposition has shown today that we all want to preserve democracy in the country. MQM (Pakistan)’s Dr Farooq Sattar reiterated the opposition’s decision to support democracy.
Qaumi Watan Party Chairman Aftab Sherpao said that the ANP and QWP, however, want to wait the Supreme Court (SC) verdict before deciding on calling for the prime minister’s resignation. “We are agreed with the opposition on the other demands, including unconditional support for the Supreme Court,” he added.