In an interesting development, the Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA) as well as Pakistan Tehreel e Insaf (PTI), candidate Moazzam Ali Khan Abbasi defeated Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) Jamil Ahmed Soomro in Larkana. This defeat has created a serious political challenge for the PPP for two reasons. Firstly, the party is in power for the last more than 10 years in the province. Secondly, Larkana is considered to be the stronghold of the PPP. A defeat in Larkana means a major blow to the ideological base of the PPP which primarily originates from these areas e.g. rural Sindh.
The joint candidate of GDA and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Moazzam Ali Khan Abbasi, won the PS-11 Larkana-II by-election by easily defeating PPP candidate
— ARY News (@ARYNEWSOFFICIAL) October 17, 2019
According to unofficial results received from all 138 polling stations, Mozzam Abbasi bagged 29,321 votes while Jamil Ahmed Soomro got 26,329 votes. In last year’s general elections, GDA’s Moazzam Ali Khan had secured 32, 178 votes, while PPP’s Nida Khuhro had received 21,811 votes.
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had announced by-elections in the PS-11 Larkana-II constituency after the de-seating of MPA Moazzam Abbasi of the Grand Democratic Alliance by the Supreme Court in August.
Read more: Will PTI topple PPP’s government in Sindh?
Earlier, PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari had held meetings with stakeholders of the PPP and supporters, including PML-N to get his candidate Jamil Ahmed Soomro elected. Interestingly, the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI-F) backed the GDA candidate.
President of the PPP’s Sindh chapter Nisar Khuhro through a video message expressed his surprise over the JUI-F’s policy of opposing the PTI at the Center and supporting the same party in the province, saying this policy did not match the stature of Maulana Fazlur Rehman. “I am daring to ask this question from (JUI-F chief) Maulana Fazlur Rehman. Are you with the PTI or against it?” Mr. Khuhro said.
Cracks within the opposition ranks have started surfacing ahead of the anti-government long march.https://t.co/2EjQwYCEmc
— Dawn.com (@dawn_com) October 15, 2019
Mr. Khuhro went on saying that “It is a dual policy of the JUI-F to be the PTI’s opponent at the Centre and an ally in Sindh. The PPP Jiyalas (activists) are angry and frustrated because of the dual policy of Maulana Fazlur Rehman”. He asked that Maulana should answer if the local leadership of Larkana was acting on its own and in violation of the party’s discipline or was it in line with the party policy.
مولنا کا وفاق میں عمران خان کیساتھ لڑائی۔۔مطلب دھرنا دے رہا ہیں
اور سندھ میں تحریک انصاف کو مکمل سپورٹ کرتا ہیںhttps://t.co/WPlXdXQaln
— Sadiq Amin 🇵🇰 (@SadiqPost) October 15, 2019
Reacting on the defeat of his candidate in by-elections, PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari tweeted that his party will challenge this ‘rigging’ at every forum as the truth can’t be hidden and will expose this selection.
Bilawal Bhutto, in a series of tweets, lauded PPP workers for fighting an honorable election despite immense pressure hurdles they faced. He wrote: “Our candidate wasn’t even allowed inside polling stations. We kept asking ECP to intervene but its mala fide intent was apparent in its silence. Despite all this political engineering, PPP has reduced the GDA/JUIF/PTI lead by 5,000 votes in less than a year.”
Im proud of PPP workers for fighting an honorable election. Despite immense pressure form the establishment.
From pre-poll with NAB arresting & sending notices to PPP workers & their families. 1/5 #PS11
— BilawalBhuttoZardari (@BBhuttoZardari) October 17, 2019
The PTI is celebrating the victory since it gave them the confidence in inroading their political ideology in areas where PPP has been dominating since long.
GDA-PTI alliance has buried Bhutto in Larkana elections, even after some very strong campaigning by PPP. Negates the oppositions talking point that they are out for civilian supremacy, just before their Mullah March.
Will people of #PS11 receive 'Izzat' for their votes?
— Asfandyar Bhittani (@BhittaniKhannnn) October 17, 2019