Sack me, PPP veteran Fahim dares Zardari


Islamabad : The simmering differences in the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) that leads the country’s ruling coalition have burst into the open with senior leader Amin Fahim daring party co-chair Asif Ali Zardari to sack him.

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“I am fully prepared to face all possible consequences, including a show-cause notice from the Zardari-led leadership,” The News Tuesday quoted Fahim as saying.

“The party is being kept in habeas corpus by the incumbent leaders and the country’s overall situation is worsening,” he added.

According to the newspaper, Fahim “went emotional while saying the party has been taken hostage by a few new entrants and elements with vested interest in its ranks”.

“If the party deems it fit, it should issue a show-cause notice to me and I will respond to it properly,” Fahim maintained.

Fahim is one of the PPP’s most senior leaders and was a close confidant of slain former prime minister Benazir Bhutto. He was being spoken of as an interim prime minister in the wake of the February general elections that saw the PPP emerge as the single largest party in the National Assembly but well short of a majority till it stitched together a four-party coalition.

Fahim, it was said, would keep the seat warm for Bhutto’s widower Zardari till he got elected to parliament. Zardari, however, opted to make a political novice, Yousaf Raza Gilani, the prime minister.

Replying to a question, Fahim claimed that he had not violated party discipline and would continue to pinpoint faults on the part of the government and those at the helm of affairs within the party.

“I stand for spearheading the mission of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto,” Fahim maintained.

The PPP leader was brutal in his criticism of the manner in which the government was functioning.

“The law and order situation is worsening, people are committing suicide along with their children, frontiers are unsafe, prices are rampantly rising and terrorist acts are increasing in the country,” Fahim maintained.

“Ironically, the government did nothing to improve (the situation) despite the passage of over a hundred days,” he added.

“Suicides, price-hike and law and order are totally out of the control of the government. Being a senior member, it is my foremost duty to pinpoint flaws and faults in the party affairs as well as the government.

“If they (the party leadership) consider it a violation of party discipline than I would stand by my position,” Fahim asserted.