PESHAWAR: The Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) has withdrawn its candidate for the NA-4 by-election in favour of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) Nasir Khan Musazai — a possible setback for another major contender, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).
JUI-F and PML-N provincial chiefs, Maulana Gul Naseeb Khan and Amir Muqam, made the announcement at the JUI-F headquarters in Peshawar.
They were flanked by JUI-F candidate Khalid Waqar Chamkani and PML-N’s Musazai.
Gul Naseeb Khan said after a series of meetings between the leaderships of both parties, his party has decided to withdraw its candidate Chamkani in favour of the PML-N.
“We will support the PML-N candidate in winning the by-election,” he added.”The JUI-F has good terms with the ruling party [PML-N] in the Centre.”
Talking about the PTI-led government in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), Naseeb said the ruling party had ruined the institutions of the province and now it would take over 10 years to fix them.
“They [PTI] promised that it would bring a change in the province but instead of positive development, every institution in the province has been ruined because of malpractices,” the provincial chief of the party said.
Speaking on the occasion, Muqam thanked the JUI-F for extending its support to his party’s candidate .”Now we aren’t running in the election on the platform of the PML-N or the JUI-F, but using a joint platform,” he added.
The NA-4 seat fell vacant after the death of PTI’s Gulzar Khan, who had secured more than 55000 votes in the 2013 general elections followed by PML-N’s Musazai who bagged over 20,000 votes.
On Monday, the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) had asked the PTI to withdraw its candidate in their support for the NA-4 by-poll.
The JI had supported the PTI in PK-8 by-poll in Peshawar after the seat fell vacant due the death of PML-N’s Arbab Akbar Hayat. The elections were won by PML-N’s Arbab Muhammad Waseem again while the PTI stood third in the race.
Musazai has been nominated by the PML-N again to contest the NA-4 by-election while PTI’s Arbab Amir, Awami National Party’s (ANP) Khushdil Khan, an ex-speaker of the K-P Assembly, and JI’s Wasil Farooq are also in the race.
The constituency has been won by Pakistan Peoples Party’s Nasirullah Khan Babar in 1993, Mian Muzaffar Shah of the same party in 1988, Sabir Hussain Awan of Muttahida Majlis Amal in 2002 and PTI’s Gulzar Khan in 2013.
The ANP had withdrawn its candidate in favour of the PML-N in the recently held NA-120 by-poll in Lahore.
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