Pakistan

PPP members oppose Aitzaz Ahsan’s withdrawal from presidential poll: source

Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) members have opposed withdrawal of party candidate Aitzaz Ahsan from the forthcoming presidential election, sources.
PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari summoned a party meeting on Tuesday to discuss cooperation sought by Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) leader Maulana Fazlur Rahman for a consensus presidential candidate.
The party members met to discuss Fazl’s request and take a final decision on a presidential candidate.
Sources said the meeting reviewed possible repercussions and political gains of supporting Fazl as consensus candidate, however, PPP members opposed Ahsan’s withdrawal from the race.
Zardari said the JUI-F leader was a respected figure for them, but they had to make a “political decision”, according to sources.
A day earlier, the JUI-F chief, who has submitted his nomination papers for the presidential election to be held on September 4 after being fielded as the nominee of all opposition parties except PPP, called on the former president and sought cooperation.
Sources disclosed that the JUI-F leader requested Zardari to withdraw PPP candidate Senator Aitzaz Ahsan from the presidential contest.
Fazl also told the former president that except the PPP, all opposition parties were supporting his candidacy for the office of the country’s president and that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) objected to Ahsan’s candidacy.
He also said that if the opposition remained divided then the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s candidate Dr Arif Alvi will benefit.
Fazl, Ahsan and Alvi have submitted their nomination papers for the presidential election.