Sattar wants public to decide on disqualification as MQM-P convener

KARACHI: The former convener of MQM-P Farooq Sattar said he wanted the public to decide on the issue of his disqualification.

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had ruled that Farooq Sattar would no longer serve as the convener of Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P).

A five-member bench of the ECP had also dismissed Sattar’s petition challenging the jurisdiction of the commission in the case and nullified the intra-party elections of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), in which Farooq Sattar was elected as the party chief.
Terming the ECP’s decision to disqualify him as the party’s convener as a dark chapter in the history of verdicts announced by the regulatory body, the disgruntled leader said the verdict was ‘pre-decided’ and ‘managed’.

“The public’s decision holds more weight, for me, than any court’s decision,” he told the journalists. “I don’t want to challenge the decision in court and despite not fully accepting the decision I want my party workers and the public to make a decision.”

Later in the evening, Sattar spoke to the media at his residence in the city’s PIB Colony further said the issue [pertaining to his convenership] was not related to him or his political career.

“The matter is related to the survival and well-being of the Muhajirs,” he told the journalists.

“I will take a decision [on the matter] after consulting the public and party workers,” the disgruntled MQM-P leader said, adding that his performance of the past 30 years was in front of everyone.

Earlier in the day, the MQM-P leader had lashed out against the ECP’s verdict which led to his disqualification as the party convener.

He had labelled the ECP’s decision as a ‘dark verdict’, and added that the decision was unjust and unconstitutional.

“The decision is a black stain on Pakistan’s electoral and judicial history,” Sattar had remarked, adding that the ‘managed’ decision was a result of his standing up to the party founder after the controversy surrounding the MQM in August 2016.

“I have been punished for standing up to MQM founder and support state’s Constitution and institutions.”
Sattar had also deemed the verdict to be part of a ‘conspiracy’ to target MQM. “The MQM which I helped rescue is being dissolved now.”
He alleged that the party’s votes are also being divided so as to ‘give’ them to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal and Pakistan Sarzameen Party.”

The dispute between party members over nominations for the upcoming Senate elections had earlier resulted in the emergence of splinter groups – Dr Farooq Sattar led PIB Colony faction and the Bahadurabad group consisting of Amir Khan, Nasreen Jalil, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui among others.