KARACHI: Why has the leadership of the Pakistan People’s Party decided to remove Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah? The answer to this question could be judged from the future strategy of the Pakistan People’s Party’s leadership.
The new chief minister of Sindh will have to face big challenges for meeting the targets set by the party’s leadership.
Senior Minister of Sindh Murad Ali Shah is being considered as a candidate for the CM’s post. It would be most important for him as to what powers he is given as the chief minister of the province, as there are several centres from where the Sindh government is operated. The decisions to look after the daily affairs of the government are often taken outside the Chief Minister’s House. The chief secretary and other secretaries take and obey the orders from the people more powerful than the chief minister. It would not be an easy task for Murad Ali Shah to present good governance if he continues to work in such a set-up. Thus, the change of the chief minister would merely be a change of face.
The second challenge for Murad Ali Shah would be that senior leaders of the PPP continued working as ministers of his cabinet without any reservations, as some senior members of the provincial assembly consider Murad Ali Shah as junior.
Similarly, certain powerful communities of Sindh may also agree to go with Murad Ali Shah. These powerful families include the Mehars of Ghotki district, Durranis of Shikarpur, Chandios of Larkana, Bijaranis of Jacobabad, Malik Sikandars’s group of Jamshoro, the Makhdooms of Matiari and others.
Qaim Ali Shah did not face any of these problems as none had any objection considering his age and seniority. He was also acceptable to the leadership of the party and workers.
It is generally understood that no one would openly object to the leadership of Syed Murad Ali Shah, but some senior leaders of the party have either conveyed their reservations to the party leadership or have also expressed their reactions. There is also an impression about Syed Murad Ali Shah that he prefers his job more than his relations with the people. On the other hand, he is not very social. He will have to end this impression. Having settled these basic issues, Syed Murad Ali Shah will have to achieve the political targets and make his plan for the political aims for which he would be nominated as chief minister.
According to informed sources in the PPP, the party wants to make an aggressive strategy before the coming election. The leadership of the party is feeling that noose is being tightened against its government in Sindh and an impression of a parallel government has been created. Syed Qaim Ali Shah, with his policy of fighting on backfoot dragged the government of the PPP to the present status, and achieved his targets. Now the PPP wants to face the situation by adopting ‘front foot policy’, as it has become necessary in the wake of the general election.
The new chief minister of Sindh will need full support of all circles of the party to work on this strategy. In case Murad Ali Shah becomes the chief minister, he will have to win the support of all circles of the party, maintain better relations with the media and give the impression of good governance.