Authority to decide party’s candidates for elections rests with Imran: Gohar

  • New chief says party actively engaged in preparations, ensuring a thorough vetting process for field candidates
  • Expresses optimism about party’s resilience and ability to overcome challenges

ISLAMABAD: Newly-appointed Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Barrister Gohar Ali Khan, on Thursday said that the final authority to decide who would receive the party ticket for the upcoming general elections rested with the founding PTI chairman Imran Khan – currently in jail.

After holding his second meeting with Imran at the Adiala Jail, the PTI chairman said that the potential candidates were already being interviewed, adding that the integrity and dedication to party’s principles were the core values for obtaining the PTI ticket.

Following the meeting, Barrister Gohar said that matters pertaining to the party’s organisational affairs, legal matters concerning upcoming elections, and ongoing cases were discussed with Imran, who was currently incarcerated and entangled in multiple cases.

Gohar revealed that the committees had already been formed to oversee the selection of candidates for the upcoming elections. “The party is actively engaged in preparations, ensuring a thorough vetting process to field candidates with integrity and dedication to party’s principles,” the PTI chairman said.

Highlighting the significance of the founder’s role, Barrister Gohar stated: “The founding chairman holds the authority to decide who will receive the party’s ticket.” Gohar’s disclosure came on the heels of a story published in The Express Tribune, revealing that the party had been busy screening candidates and was all set to distribute party tickets.

Speaking to the media outside the Adiala Jail, Gohar emphasized that the recently held intra-party elections, as mandated by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), were conducted in strict adherence to the constitution and legal guidelines.

He expressed confidence in the PTI’s commitment to maintain a clean and fair electoral process, despite alleged attempts to tarnish the party’s image. Acknowledging the challenges faced by the party, the PTI chairman described the current phase as “a testing time for the party”.

Despite external efforts to create obstacles, he expressed optimism about the PTI’s resilience and ability to overcome challenges. Regarding the ongoing legal battles, Gohar expressed hope for relief from the courts, saying the party was actively pursuing legal avenues to address any legal challenges, signalling a commitment to upholding democratic principles.

In a reaffirmation to his commitment, Gohar said: “I belong to the PTI and will stay with it.” He also praised the former prime minister for setting an example by entrusting the party’s leadership to a dedicated worker.

He highlighted the meritocratic approach within the PTI, contrasting it with practices of nepotism seen in other political spheres. Amid the complexities faced by the PTI, he expressed confidence in navigating the challenges.

The commitment to transparency, adherence to democratic values, and the founder’s continued influence all contributed to the PTI’s ongoing efforts to uphold its principles and “contribute positively to Pakistan’s political landscape”.




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