MQM-P Denies Discussing Next Government Formation
Following a meeting with PML-N in Lahore, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) clarified that discussions did not involve the formation of the next government.
A day after the February 8 general elections, PML-N leader Nawaz Sharif hinted at a national unity government, similar to the Pakistan Democratic Movement alliance. Former Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif was tasked with initiating consultations on government formation.
Today, a delegation from MQM-P, led by Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, visited Nawaz Sharif’s Jati Umra residence in Lahore. The meeting included Siddiqui, Dr. Farooq Sattar, Kamran Tessori, Mustafa Kamal, and PML-N members such as the Sharif brothers, Ishaq Dar, Maryam Nawaz, Rana Sanaullah, Ayaz Sadiq, and Khawaja Saad Rafique.
After the meeting, PML-N released a statement announcing a “principle agreement” to work together for the country’s and the public’s interest. The statement mentioned the agreement on “basic points” between the two parties, following an hour-long discussion on the overall political situation and party-level contacts.
However, Siddiqui, the MQM-P convener, clarified to the media that the meeting did not include discussions on the formation of the next government. He acknowledged the challenging situation post-elections, emphasizing the importance of all parties playing a role in steering the country out of the crisis. Siddiqui stated that no discussions had taken place regarding the government’s formation, and it was not confirmed whether MQM-P would have any share in the next government.
PML-N leader Azam Nazeer Tarar characterized the visit as a “goodwill visit” during a press conference in Lahore after the meeting. He mentioned plans for another round of talks with MQM-P in the coming days. Tarar emphasized the need for a coalition government, stating that no single political party had the mandate to independently form a government. The goal is to establish a strong alliance at the Centre, representing all provinces to strengthen the Federation and Pakistan, he added.
Tarar also addressed allegations of rigging in the February 8 polls, stating that the party conducted extensive consultations and formed a legal team. Despite the electoral defeat of Khawaja Saad Rafique, Tarar criticized the PTI for fabricating falsehoods to create an illusion of truth, accusing them of perpetuating a habit of deception.