MQM-P makes it official, quits PTI-led coalition govt
Joint opposition urges PM Khan to step down
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The Muttahida Qaumi Movement Pakistan has formally announced to bid adieu to the ruling PTI-lead coalition government, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.
The announcement was made by MQM-P leader Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui at joint news conference with top opposition leaders in Islamabad on Wednesday afternoon.
"We have gathered at a historic moment. More than congratulations, this is a test through which the national leadership has to pass," Siddiqui said. "Today is also a day for prayers ... common people's wishes have been fulfilled. I expect that this time we can [strive for] a democracy whose effects can reach the common people of Pakistan.
"We have joined you (the opposition) on this journey with these expectations. We have no individual or party benefits. Every clause of our agreement is for the common public of Pakistan and especially for those areas whom we have been representing for the last 35 years. The areas for which we believe immediate steps are needed."
"We have prioritised Pakistan's interests over all individual interests," he added.
Following Maqbool's announcement, Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif said: "Today is an important day in Pakistan's history because a joint opposition ... a national jirga of the opposition ... has come together and efforts have been made for national unity.
"I want to thank MQM-P and its workers who kept the wishes of the 220 million people of Pakistan [at heart] and made this decision. I am especially thankful to Asif Ali Zardari and Bilawal that through this whole process of negotiations, they kept the history aside. They have initiated this journey of Pakistan's prosperity and Karachi's happiness."
"This agreement will be implemented in letter and spirit," the PML-N leader added.
He also demanded of PM Imran Khan to tender his resignation to set an example.
PPP leader Bilawal also thanks MQM-P and described its decision of teaming up with the opposition as "historic".
"I want to repeat that PPP and MQM-P's working relationship is not related to the no-confidence motion. PPP and MQM-P have to work together under any condition, if we want to work for Karachi and Pakistan's prosperity," he said.
"Imran Khan has now lost his majority. He is not the prime minister anymore. The parliament session is tomorrow. Let's hold voting tomorrow and settle this matter. We can then start working on transparent elections and the journey towards restoration of democracy and an end to economic crisis can then begin."
Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman also welcomed MQM-P's decision, saying: "This decision is an expression of national unity for not only Karachi and Sindh but the whole of Pakistan.
"As a result of these decisions (government allies joining the opposition), our strength in the National Assembly now stands at 176 while we need only 172," he added.
Fazl said it was a drop scene of a drama that has been started some four years ago.
He also congratulated the government over opposition’s victory. He also invited other political parties who were undecided yet to join the opposition’s movement.
He said the country needs economic reforms and also asked Imran Khan to resign. He said through a global conspiracy, Imran Khan was brought into power and termed his statement regarding any conspiracy or threat to him as a white lie.
BNP’s Akhtar Mengal also demanded PM to resign.