In a surprising development on Friday, the PTI decided to dissolve its organisations following a setback in the recently held first phase of local government elections in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
"The prime minister consulted the national (level) leadership of the party today and decided that all of the PTI's organisations must be dissolved," said Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry.
The move follows a meeting of senior leadership of the party where the strategy for the second phase of local body polls in KP, as well as local government elections in Punjab, was discussed.
Chaudhry said that the PTI's chief organiser (Saifullah Niazi) as well as all other office holders have been "removed from their posts".
He said all committees, from the Centre, down to the tehsil level, have been disbanded, as have all PTI parliamentary boards.
"A new constitution committee has been formed. The entire senior, national level leadership of the party will be a part of the committee," he said.
The information minister went on to say that wherever there is the question of a party member's relatives being awarded a ticket, the local leadership will not be the one to make a call.
"A special committee will be made at the Centre to whom cases will be forwarded and it will decide whether or not the ticket must be awarded," he explained.
The minister said that for the next phase of KP local body polls, a big committee of the national leadership has been created which includes Pervez Khattak, Mahmood Khan and Murad Saeed, Asad Qaiser, Ali Amin Gandapur from KP; Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Hammad Azhar, Fawad Chaudhry, Chaudhary Mohammad Sarwar, Saifullah Niazi, Amir Kayani, Usman Buzdar from Punjab; Mir Khan Muhammad Jamali and Qasim Suri from Balochistan; Imran Ismail, Ali Haider Zaidi from Sindh; and Asad Umar from the capital.
Chaudhry said that the committee will work under a "new constitution" and will very soon introduce the new organisational framework for the party.
He said for the next phase of the KP local body polls, Chief Minister KP Mahmood Khan will ensure with the local leadership that a proper mechanism for the award of tickets is implemented, rather than relatives being considered.
The minister said that more than 1,100 tickets are given out in elections.
"There is no party other than PTI that can get so many people to stand in the elections," he said, adding that the PTI is "still the largest party in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa".
He went on to say that "if anyone is considered a leader, it is Imran Khan".
Chaudhry said that if PTI goes down then "Pakistan's politics will suffer a decline".
The information minister said that PM Imran Khan met CM Mahmood Khan and Pervez Khattak to discuss the PTI's dismal performance in the local body polls and expressed great dissatisfaction.
Chaudhry said that complaints were received regarding tickets being awarded to the relatives of PTI members and expressed displeasure over merit not being considered.
He said that no formal report on the KP election has been submitted to the prime minister yet.
"Everything will be put before the 21-member committee which will then examine the facts," the minister said.
The first meeting of the 21-member Supreme Committee was convened today in Islamabad.
Sources told Geo News that during the meeting, PM Imran Khan expressed astonishment over PML-N and PPP celebrating after the KP local government elections.
"PTI's voters and the masses are still very much with us," the sources quoted the prime minister as saying.
The JUI-F emerged as the top performing party in the first phase of the local government elections, according to unofficial results.
The sources said that the prime minister said he is awaiting the Election Commission of Pakistan's (ECP) final results and that further decisions would be taken in light of those.
Talking about the Opposition parties, the premier said there have been rumours of ending former prime minister Nawaz Sharif's sentence. "How can the sentence of a convicted person be overturned?"
The premier recalled that the court had disqualified Nawaz in the Panama Leaks case, and to date, he was unable to provide a money trail for his assets.
"How can a convicted person become the prime minister after having his sentence revoked?" he questioned.
Tickets will not be awarded on the basis of favouritism and bribery in the future as PTI faced a major setback in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa local body polls due to "incompetent" people, Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Wednesday, according to sources.
The prime minister's comments came during a meeting with CM KP Mahmood Khan, where the province's chief presented a report on why the party suffered losses in the local body polls, the sources said.
The sources said that the report mentioned the lawmakers who did not support the party during the polls, allocation of party tickets for the elections, and other issues.
The report attributed PTI’s defeat in the first phase of the elections to "mismanagement" and that "workers of the same party contested elections against each other".
Sources further added that the report cited "traditional politics" as a reason behind the defeat in the local body elections, adding that the distribution of party tickets was another reason behind PTI’s failure.
According to the report, the poor selection of candidates led to disagreements between party workers. Hence, the party wasn’t united during the first phase of the elections.
During the meeting, the premier expressed his dissatisfaction over the party's failure in the local body elections, saying that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was PTI's baseline and the party lost the election due to “internal incompetence”.
The premier said that in the second phase of the local body elections, he would personally decide candidates, adding that favouritism and bribery would not be tolerated.
According to sources, PM Imran Khan directed the chief minister to unite PTI workers.
The premier also reportedly stated that the party should learn lessons from the results of the first phase as this time differences among the party members benefitted the Opposition.
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