The Jamaat-i-Islami and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz will battle it out in Union Council 112. The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf has withdrawn its candidates for chairman and vice chairman to clear the field for JI in the area traditionally considered a PML-N stronghold.
JI’s Ammanullah Khan is vying for chairman and Mazhar Jillani for vice chairman. According to the deal they struck with the PTI, they have planned to split the ward councillor seats between them.
The constituency falls under NA-128 and PP-160 from where Malik Afzal Khokhar and his brother Malik Saiful Malook Khokhar won the National Assembly and Provincial Assembly seats.
However, Mansoora, JI’s headquarters, also falls in the area giving the JI a strong footing in the union council. No other party has fielded candidates and there are no independent candidates either. The JI candidate says the PTI has been helping them in their campaign. “We are hopeful that we will win.” He says that the PML-N candidates from their area in the National Assembly and the provincial assembly have never attempted to solve their problems. He says after winning the election, the party will work for the welfare of people.
The PML-N has filed Naveedul Haq Kiyani for chairman.
PML-N workers in the area say the party is poised to win. “We will make sure there is a lot of development work in our area.” On whether the PTI and the JI alliance posed a threat, they say it does not matter because the PML-N’s candidates are well respected in the area. They say it was during the PML-N’s tenure that the Multan Road was widened. “That has helped the residents commute and increased business for shops along the road.”
Residents of the area say they have many problems: lack of access to safe drinking water and road infrastructure within the residential areas to name a few. They say both parties were promising these facilities. The union council has more than 21,000 registered voters. The areas in the constituency include Waris Colony, Mansoora Colony, Pak Town, Haseeb Block, Azam Garden, Islam Block, Faisal Block, Ghosha Ehbab Phase 2, Ghani colony, Education Town, Karamat Colony, Mustafa Town, Qayyum Block, Allah Yar Block, Ahmed Yar Block, Shahbaz Block, Abbas Block and the PCSIR Phase 1.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 30th, 2015.