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June 28, 2018

Most candidates running for Peshawar NA seats changed loyalties


June 28, 2018

PESHAWAR: Many candidates contesting for the National Assembly seats in the provincial capital changed loyalties ahead of the 2018 general election and succeeded in getting tickets from their new parties.

Peshawar has five seats in the National Assembly and 14 in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly. Almost all political parties have fielded candidates for the national and provincial assemblies’ seats in Peshawar city and district.

For NA-27, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has awarded ticket to Noor Alam Khan who contested the last general election on the ticket of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and lost to PTI’s Sajid Nawaz by a huge margin.

The PTI candidate had obtained 66,528 votes while Noor Alam Khan polled 22,045 votes while running for the then NA-3 constituency which is now NA-27. Noor Alam manoeuvred to get the PTI ticket instead of Sajid Nawaz.

Ghulam Ali of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) was runner-up in the last election in NA-27. He is now the candidate of the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA), which includes the JUI-F.

In the 2008 general election, Noor Alam had won the seat on the PPP ticket by a narrow margin. He had defeated Hashim Babar, who was the candidate of the Awami National Party (ANP) at the time.

For NA-29 Peshawar (previously called NA-4), the PTI has awarded ticket to another turncoat Nasir Khan Musazai who contested the 2013 general election and also the 2017 by-election on the ticket of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

In the 2013 general election, he had obtained 20,415 votes against PTI candidate Gulzar Khan, who won the seat by a big margin. In the by-election necessitated by Gulzar Khan’s death, Nasir Musazai secured 24,790 votes against PTI’s Amir Ayub who polled 45,737 votes.

Armed with the PTI ticket, Nasir Musazai is now contesting against his previous party leader Amir Muqam for the renamed NA-29 constituency.

The MMA has awarded ticket to former ANP candidate Arbab Najeebullah for NA-30 Peshawar. He had joined the PTI some months back in the hope of getting its ticket. He wasted no time in quitting PTI and joining the JUI-F after being denied the ticket. The JUI-F too was looking for someone to take its ticket for NA-30 to face PTI’s Arbab Sher Ali Arbab Najeebullah had lost to PPP candidate Arbab Alamgir Khalil in 2008 polls. In 2013 election, his votes dropped to 12,137 and even the JUI-F candidate was ahead of him in the old NA-2 Peshawar constituency.

Former PTI minister Ziaullah Afridi joined the PPP after developing differences with his party’s provincial government. In fact, the PTI expelled him after he was arrested by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Ehtesab Commission on corruption charges.

In the 2013 general election, Ziaullah Afridi had won from the old provincial assembly constituency PK-1. He had contested election on the PTI ticket and had obtained 22,932 votes. He is now contesting the election on the PPP ticket for the same provincial assembly seat in Peshawar.

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