Rifts taint MMA as JUI-F, JI field separate candidates in FATA | Pakistan Today

Rifts taint MMA as JUI-F, JI field separate candidates in FATA

  • JUI-F gets to place majority of candidates on MMA’s platform

PESHAWAR: Rifts and divisions have tainted the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) as the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) and Jamat-e-Islami (JI), the two major components of MMA, have placed different candidates in erstwhile FATA for the upcoming polls.

The leaders of MMA, however, have claimed of winning a majority in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) in the upcoming elections.

The JUI-F has fielded its own workers on all 12 National Assembly seats from former FATA who are going to contest on its symbol ‘book’.  The JI, on the other hand, has placed four candidates as independents from Bajaur, Mohmand and Khyber Agencies.

According to the MMA formula, the JUI-F has received a lion’s share in allotting tickets as it has fielded candidates on 28 out of 39 National Assembly seats and 63 provincial assembly seats. For the remaining 11 national and 37 provincial assembly seats, the remaining four parties of the MMA have fielded their candidates.

Amongst these remaining components of MMA, JI has placed candidates on 99 per cent of the remaining seats.

Serious rifts have emerged between the JUI-F and the JI as the latter has entered into an alliance with the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) against JUI-F in Buner. The JI will support PML-N candidate for National Assembly seat whereas the PML-N will back the JI candidates on three provincial assembly seats.

Similarly, in Swat, the JI candidate on provincial assembly seat is supporting a JUI-F dissident.

Moreover, in both Dir districts and several other parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), a majority of JUI-F workers are reluctant to support the JI candidates for the upcoming elections.

Like Dir, Bannu is also considered a stronghold of JUI-F and the MMA ignored the JI in awarding of all national and provincial assembly tickets in this area. Former chief minister Akram Khan Durrani is contesting this time on MMA ticket with ‘book’ as the election symbol against PTI chief Imran Khan.

JI remains a coalition partner of PTI, therefore, there are apprehensions that JI might support Imran Khan against Akram Khan Durrani. JI’s senior leader Professor Muhammad Ibrahim Khan belongs to Bannu but was ignored while allotting tickets.

Tehrik-e-Islami, a Shia component of MMA in Dera Ismail Khan, has entered into a seat adjustment with PTI. But the JUI-F is supporting a former PTI MPA against Tehrik-e-Islami in Dera Ismail Khan.

In Swabi, on one national and two provincial assembly seats, the MMA has entered into a seat adjustment with PML-N. In both Abbottabad and Mansehra districts, workers and stalwarts of JUI-F and JI are unhappy with the distribution of tickets, and have, therefore, assured support to other parties like PML-N and PTI.

When contacted, JI’s KP Secretary Maulana Abdul Wase and JUI-F’s KP Information Secretary Abdul Jalil Jan showed satisfaction over what they called an understanding amongst the ranks of candidates and workers of both the parties. They claimed that the MMA will emerge as a majority party in coming general elections in the province.

Jalil Jan said that the issues that exist in districts like Buner, Swat and Dir would be resolved during MMA’s central council in a few days. He claimed that the upcoming polls will prove that the majority of tribesmen are against the merger and JUI-F had won a majority of National Assembly seats from former FATA.

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