PPP may join Punjab cabinet

In Local
March 30, 2024



In what might seem as a departure from its earlier position of not becoming part of the government, the PPP in Punjab has hinted at accepting portfolios in the provincial cabinet when it expanded after Eidul Fitr.

This move might pave the way for its entry into the federal cabinet as well.

Ali Haider Gilani, the PPP parliamentary leader in the Punjab Assembly and senior leader Yousuf Raza Gilani, told The Express Tribune that his party was highly likely to become part of the provincial cabinet on its expansion in the second phase.

The PPP had vowed to support the PML-N in forming the government for the sake democracy, but announced its resolve of not becoming part of the cabinet.

The party indeed stuck to its stance by not becoming part of either the federal or provincial cabinets.
However, a minister now in the Punjab government, then revealed that the PPP, contrary to its public position, had expressed its desire to become part of the government. She added that its request was not entertained.

it is pertinent to mention that the support from the PPP in the Centre was not an altruistic act.
The party bagged several coveted positions as a quid pro quo including the president of the country.
In his conversation with The Express Tribune, Ali Haider Gilani maintained that the PPP only wanted political space for itself and there was nothing more that it desired from the PML-N.

He added that the PPP wanted proportionate representation in the provincial cabinet.

To query about deviating from the party’s stated position of not becoming accepting any portfolios, he said the PPP was only becoming part of the Punjab cabinet.

He added that his in no way affected the party’s stance taken about the Centre.

The PPP leader said his party and the PML-N were already allies in the Balochistan government so accepting ministries in Punjab would be no different.

On the question about if the decision has been made, he said the understanding was there but still the final decision would come from the party’s central leadership.

On the speculation of the PPP withdrawing Faiza Ahmed Malik from Senate elections for a reserved seat for women, he said the party had already secured a seat from Islamabad.

“So yes, Faiza might be asked to withdraw from the race,” he added.

Sources within the PPP said Ali Haider Gilani wanted to become part of the provincial cabinet from the start, but so far the decision had not been made at any forum in the party.

The PPP parliamentary leader in the Punjab Assembly claimed that the party was expected to revisit the decision about the cabinet after the Senate elections on April 2 and it could either agree in favour of the move or against it.

Political analyst Hasan Askari said if the PPP became part of the Punjab cabinet, it would be a deviation from its earlier position of staying away from the decision-making processes.

He continued that the PPP would be seen by all means as an equal partner of the PML-N if it went ahead with the move.

“The PPP too will be held accountable for the decisions of the PML-N government. It will be answerable for all the good and bad ones.”

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