KARACHI: Former party Rabita Committee member Waseem Aftab and sitting MPA Iftikhar Alam became the latest dissidents from the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) to join Mustafa Kamal’s ranks. Former mayor of Karachi, Kamal, held a third press conference on Thursday to announce the arrival.
“Today, I welcome two friends, Waseem Aftab former Rabita Committee member and former head of KTC and Iftikhar Alam, who is member of the Sindh Assembly from Azizabad,” said Kamal at the start of the press conference.
Iftikhar Alam said, “Hundreds have sacrificed their lives, hundreds yet live in exile.”
“I have come to realise that the corruption is not in this world, but within our ranks, and perhaps, at the head of our spring, the person we have worshipped.”
Referring to MQM’s earlier political alliances with PPP, he stated, “We united with the PPP, but the outcome was that we could neither be friends or enemies with them.”
“Whenever the party was in a position of leverage to have help the citizens, we left the PPP-led coalition. The PML-Q, which was non-existent, managed to attain important posts including that of the deputy prime minister while we were left rubbing our hands,” added Alam.
Gathered to prevent more blodshed
“We want to see Pakistan as a respected nation, and we have gathered to prevent more bloodshed,” said Alam.
The new addition to Kamal’s camp also stated that if MQM’s leader cared for his workers, he would not have asked them to collect hides at a time when it was difficult, due to the restrictions imposed by the state.
Iftikhar Alam was fielded by the MQM for PS-106 constituency of Karachi’s Azizbabad area where the party headqauerters Nine Zero is located.
Earlier on Thursday morning, MQM workers launched the ‘Clean Karachi Campaign’ (CKC) as scheduled by top party representative Farooq Sattar in an announcement earlier this week to clean up both streets and minds in Karachi.
The MQM leader had claimed that the initiative will ‘kill two birds with one stone’, as the party reels from rumours of party chief Altaf Hussain’s ill-health and the return of Mustafa Kamal and Anees Qaimkhani to the political scene and Dr Sagheer Ahmed’s switch of loyalty towards Mustafa Kamal, leaving his political party of 28 years.