Monday, Oct 03, 2022 | Last Update : 08:53 PM IST

  World   Asia  25 Dec 2016  Pakistan politics heats up as Zardari returns

Pakistan politics heats up as Zardari returns

Published : Dec 25, 2016, 7:03 am IST
Updated : Dec 25, 2016, 7:05 am IST

Zardari’s objective will be to improve the party’s numerical strength in the legislatures.

Asif Ali Zardari (Photo: AP)
 Asif Ali Zardari (Photo: AP)

Islamabad: Pakistan’s former President Asif Ali Zardari has returned to the country, ending his 18-month-long self-imposed exile, amidst speculations about his future role in the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), which has threatened a major protest against the Nawaz Sharif government.

The party has asked the government to change the interior minister and appoint a full-time foreign minister, among other demands, before December 27 or face street demonstrations.

So far, none of the demands have been fulfilled.

Mr Zardari landed at Karachi’s Jinnah International Airport on Friday afternoon and later addressed a huge rally criticising Prime Minister Sharif.

But, the local media was not sure about the role of Mr Zardari, who with his son Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, is the co-chairman of the PPP, which is the largest Opposition party and also rules southern province of Sindh.

“Will Zardari take back the reins of PPP? Will he change the party’s strategy in dealing with the ruling PML-N? Will his son take the back seat? These are the questions making the rounds in political circles as Zardari returned to Karachi,” the Express Tribune reported. The answer to all these questions is “no”.

This is at least what the Express Tribune has learnt from top PPP officials in background interviews.

They say Bilawal will remain the face of the party, while Mr Zardari will act as a “patriarch”. Mr Zardari’s objective will be to improve the party’s numerical strength in the legislatures.

Tags: asif ali zardari, pakistan peoples party, nawaz sharif
Location: Pakistan, Islamabad