Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazal (JUI-F) general secretary and PDM candidate for Senate deputy chairman Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri called on Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) convener Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui on Wednesday.
During the meeting, Ghafoor Haideri sought MQM-P’s support for the deputy chairmanship of the upper house of the Parliament.
The country’s overall political situation was also discussed during the meeting.
Federal minister Ameenul Haq, and Maulana Attaur Rehman were also present during the meeting.
Race for Senate chairman, deputy chairman
After Senate polls 2021, all eyes are now set on the coming election for the key offices of chairman and deputy chairman of the upper house.
The PTI’s tally in the Senate stands at 25. Government allies, BAP has a total of 12 seats in the Senate and MQM-P three.
The ruling party has the support of BAP, MQM, PML-Q, GDA and JWP. The opposition and the ruling alliances now have 53 and 47 members, respectively, in the 100-member new Senate.
PDM, an 11-party alliance has nominated Yousuf Raza Gilani for Senate chairman while the government has fielded Sadiq Sanjarni for the upper house chairman slot.
The election to elect the Senate chairman and deputy chairman will be held on March 12 through secret balloting.
Puzzling Senate Elections results
The Senate Elections results were quite disturbing for the PTI. According to the returning officer, who announced the results after counting ended in the National Assembly, six of the total 340 ballots cast in the National Assembly were rejected. Gillani obtained 169 votes, whereas Shaikh got 164. One vote was not cast. The MPs were required to vote for 37 vacant seats of the Senate with 11 senators already elected unopposed from Punjab due to withdrawals from opposing candidates.
Polling was held for 12 seats each of Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 11 of Sindh and two of the federal capital. MPAs from the three provincial assemblies cast their vote for the candidates fielded from Balochistan, KP and Sindh, while MNAs voted for the representatives from the federal capital.
“PTI has unanimously decided that Prime Minister Imran Khan will take a vote of confidence from the National Assembly,” Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said while addressing a press conference along with Federal Ministers Shafqat Mehmood, Asad Umar, Shireen Mazari, Fawad Chaudhry, Syed Ali Haider Zaidi, Hammad Azhar and others.
He described the victory of Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani as a “negation of democracy” as well as the endorsement of PM Imran Khan’s apprehensions of corrupt practices in the Senate elections.
The foreign minister said the way voting was done on the capital’s general seat, strengthened the PTI’s narrative about the use of money in the Senate elections. “We were apprehensive that the elections will be bought and the buyers of conscience will buy the votes using the name of democracy.”