QUETTA: In clear violation of party rules, members of three political parties proposed and seconded independent candidates for the Senate elections in Balochistan.
The PML-N fielded its own candidates including Nawbzada Niamatullah Zehri, Lashkari Raisani, Sardar Yaqoob Nasar and others.
Contrary to this, seven party members proposed and seconded independent candidates, sources in election commission Balochistan told NNP.
Like other parts of the country, Senate elections are scheduled to be held on 5th March in Balochistan.
A total of 65 members of Balochistan Assembly would cast their votes to elect representatives for the Upper House.
Horse trading remained a major problem in the province as influential politicians, businessmen and other high ups take part in the polls with the aid of money, a practice that has been evident in the past.
Besides ruling PML-N, two Jamiat ul Ulema e Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) legislators also proposed and seconded an independent candidate who owns a well-established construction company.
When asked about the two legislators, Maulana Ghafoor Haideri, the Central leader of JUI -F said, “Our legislators have not been sold in the past nor would they be purchased in future”.
Opposition parties have announced that they intend to devise a joint strategy in order to discourage horse-trading in Balochistan.
Sardar Akhtar Mengal, the Chief of Balochistan National Party (Mengal) while addressing a press conference said, “We would not allow anyone to sell his or her conscience in Senate elections”.
Opposition leader in Balochistan Assembly, Maulana Wasey, parliamentary leader Awami National Party (ANP), Zamarak Achakzai and BNP (Awami) leader Syed Ehsan Shah were also present during the press conference.
Three PML-Q members also proposed and seconded independent candidates. In Balochistan, 32 candidates have been testing their muscles to achieve 12 Senate seats.
Despite repeated meetings, the political parties have not been able to form an alliance to discourage horse trading and block the way of so-called independent candidates.
“My proposal is to arrest any candidate offering money,” Mehmood Achakzai, the Chief of Pashtoonkhwa Milli Awami Party said.
PML-N Balochistan President, Nawab Sanaullah Zehri has also announced formation of a three-party alliance to win maximum seats in the province.
Zehri has also strongly criticised horse trading in the Senate elections.
On the other hand, BNP (Awami) has also announced it intention to submit a reference against its Senator Kalsoom.
Kalsoom has remained a senator on BNP Awami ticket for the last six years.
With the expiry of her tenure, Kalasoom managed to get a ticket from the ruling PML-N.
“This is the worst example of horse trading,” Mir Israrullah Zehri lamented.
So far, no political party has taken any action against its legislators for proposing and seconding independent candidates in Balochistan.