Why is Nawaz Sharif not interested in helping Asif Ali Zardari?

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News Analysis |

Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has reportedly refused to attend the upcoming Multi Parties Conference (MPC) hosted by Jamiat Ulema Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rahman. A meeting was held between the disqualified PM and JUI-F’s chief at the former’s residence on Sunday. But the Maulana reportedly remained unable to convince Mr. Nawaz to attend the upcoming MPC which is intended to initiate anti-government movement.

Opposition Leader in the Punjab Assembly Hamza Shahbaz and senior PML-N leader Pervaiz Rashid also attended the meeting between Nawaz and Fazl which lasted two hours, sources said.

Some analysts even argue that the party has indirectly facilitated the PTI in forming a government by fielding Aitzaz Ahsan as their presidential candidate.

Some media reports also suggest that Mr. Nawaz asked JUI-F’s chief to give him some time and let the matter be presented before the party president Mr. Shehbaz Sharif who is currently in the custody of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). NAB arrested the opposition leader in a corruption case. He is being interrogated by the anti-corruption watchdog these days.

Sources also confirm that the former premier made it clear to Maulana that he was not interested in any anti-government activity since the PTI-led government is digging their own grave and their performance is in front of everyone so we want, said elder Sharif, to give them the opportunity to show their failures to the nation.

Read more: Nawaz starts Mukk Mukka politics again with PPP to contest October…

Analysts believe that former prime minister is not interested to help out the former president Mr. Asif Ali Zardari in a critical situation. Corruption cases against Asif Ali Zardari are being investigated by the NAB and it is likely that he will be arrested soon.

Mr. Zardari wants the opposition to get united so that he may get some relief from the government. Nawaz Sharif who is not happy over what the PPP has done; reportedly the PPP’s high-headedness in Punjab, disagreement over the name of PM and President is what truly enraged the elder Sharif.

The PML-N seems to have resigned to its fate of being the opposition for at least 5 years now considers the PPP its main threat.

Prominent analyst and journalist Salman Masood tweeted that “noose is tightening around Mr. AAZ and Maulana Fazalur Rehman. Nawaz Sharif seems inclined to watch from the sidelines than join hands.”

As a matter of fact, PPP did not participate in anti-government movement after the general elections. Some analysts even argue that the party has indirectly facilitated the PTI in forming a government by fielding Aitzaz Ahsan as their presidential candidate. If the PPP had supported opposition’s joint candidate, the PTI would have lost the elections. It is widely believed that the former president did all this to seek some leverage from the government.

Read more: Grand opposition alliance ready to challenge Imran’s next government

Contrary to what Mr. Zardari was expecting, PM Imran Khan has categorically stated that there will be no NRO or any other deal to let the corrupts go unpunished. In his last speech to the nation, PM Khan repeatedly maintained that no matter what the opposition is up to, the government is not going to offer them any deal to hide their corruption.

Nawaz Sharif who was trialed, convicted, arrested and sent to jail for not being able to give money trail of what he and his children owned in the UK, knows this for a fact. Now NAB is investigating cases against the former president and his sister. Some of the very close friends of Mr. Zardari have already been taken into custody by the anti-corruption watchdog.

Another angle is that the PML-N seems bent upon battling the PPP instead of the PTI. The PML-N seems to have resigned to its fate of being the opposition for at least 5 years now considers the PPP its main threat. Many consider the PPP’s initial refusal to work with the PML-N in the parliament due to its design to become the main opposition party.

Read more: Status quo parties join hands to thwart Khan’s reform agenda

At that time the PML-N was at its low point as it had also lost its traditional stronghold of Punjab, the PPP (which had retained Sindh) thought it could supersede the PML-N. Now it seems that the dark time for the PPP is starting and the PML-N has decided to return the favor.


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