PESHAWAR – Cracks are surfacing in relations between Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervez Khattak and PTI chief Imran Khan, as the latter is dismayed over poor performance of the Khattak government, which has weakened by the attacks of a dissident group in the party.
Imran Khan, who swept the polls in the province on promise of bringing a change, is now unhappy as many questions he raised during a recent public meeting received a negative response due to the lackluster performance of his chosen chief minister Khattak.
Despite the lapse of three years, serious questions are being raised both within the PTI and from the people who do not see the promised change in their province.
The dissident group in the party has not hidden their disappointment in the party’s central leadership.
PTI dissident MNA, Khiyal Zaman Orakzai while expressing concern over performance of KP government, has said no change had taken place in the province.
This has also been admitted by party chief, Imran Khan, who fears dissidents may come out onto the streets against the KP government if their concerns were not addressed.
Khiyal Zaman said party chairman Imran Khan had openly admitted he was not satisfied with the performance of KP government and had come down hard on party leadership in the province by depriving the chief minister of his discretionary powers.
“The objective behind formation of dissident group in PTI was to apprise party leadership that the pledges made with people at time of elections are not being fulfilled and people are becoming annoyed with the slogan of change,” says Khiyal Zaman.
He said it is the beauty of PTI leadership that it tolerated dissent within the party and gave an appropriate hearing to the complaints.
“Our party chief, Imran Khan converted our eleven point demand into 13 which is reflective of the fact that our objections were reasonable and accepted by party leadership,” said Zaman, who also warned that “if our 11-point demand was not accepted within due period of time, we will come on roads to lodge our protest.”
According to the political pundits in the province, KP Chief Minister is allocating billions of rupees to Nowshera district from where he belongs and Swabi district from where Speaker KP Assembly, Asad Qaiser belongs. It is creating unrest among the party ranks, they added.
Whereas other districts including the remote and backward Tank district, which deserves maximum funds, have received a very meager share, they observed.
“Undue favor at the expense of more deserving areas has caused regional disparity,” the analysts said.
MNA Khiyal Zaman upholding the allegations said, funds were misused and favorites were getting maximum share while deserving areas were being neglected.
He demanded the party leadership to restore KP Ehtesab Commission in its original form and the repeal amendments due to which its Director General, Gen (Retd) Hamid Khan had resigned.
Similarly, he added, the allegations of corruption made by former Chief of Pakhtunkhwa Energy Development Organization (PEDO), Shakeel Durrani against some bigwigs of the PTI leadership should be investigated by the Ehtesab Commission of KP.
The allegations pointed out by former DG KPEC Gen (Retd) Hamid Khan, former PEDO Chief Shakeel Durrani, and former Director Anti-Corruption Establishment, Ziaullah Toru against the corrupt elements should be investigated, by a fully authorized and independent Ehtesab Commission.
Col (R) Ameerullah Marwat MNA, expressing grave concern over the performance of the PTI government in the province, said if the corrective steps were not taken in time, the party would face the same fate like the ANP and MMA in the next general election.
The unjust distribution of the uplift funds, massive utilization of the discretionary funds by the CM in his home district and those of the Speaker and Education Minister, making the Ehtesab Commission toothless by amending the Ehtesab Bill were few matters of serious concerns for the PTI legislators to be addressed forthright.
The dissident group wants the PTI to progress and flourish in the province through its good governance, decency and across the board of accountability. “We cannot tolerate the corrupt elements within our ranks and in the government departments,” one of them said.
The political observers believe that intra-party bickering would prove disastrous for the PTI in the next elections as Imran Khan is too perturbed over what is going in the province.