Shaukat Aziz’s ’silent’ turf battle with PML president proved costly for him

November 28th, 2007 - 4:30 pm ICT by admin  

Islamabad, Nov 28 (ANI): Former Pakistan Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz being sidelined within the Pakistan Muslim League (PML) is being attributed to his wrangling with party president Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain.
A report published in the Daily Times states that Aziz, who was also a member of the 25-strong PML parliamentary board, had tried to secure a ticket for himself and a few close aides till the last minute, contradictory to what has appeared in public knowledge that the former premier chose to stay away from the January elections.
“Sources said Shaukat was more interested in a ticket outside Punjab in a remote constituency such as Tharparkar to avoid defeat, but failed to get his wish because of opposition by the Chaudhrys,” the report stated.
Efforts led by Aziz and his close aides to secure a ticket turned futile as Chaudhrys succeeded in getting rid of him ahead of the elections.
The report stated that poor advices given by Aziz’s apolitical friends proved costlier for him.
Acting on advices from his friends, Aziz had invested heavily in Islamabad as a future constituency and had approved a hefty development package of Rs 8.3 billion to be monitored by one of his friends. The friend, now a caretaker minister, was tasked with gathering support for Aziz and himself in preparation for the elections, the sources said.
The ill advice cost Aziz dearly, the report added.
Aziz became close to legislators, who had developed differences with the Chaudhrys during the district government elections.
Hina Rabbani Khar, Zahid Hamid, Chaudhry Ijaz and Farooq Amjad Mir were among those denied PML tickets because of closeness with Shaukat Aziz, it stated.
In spite of Chaudhry’s opposition, Aziz inducted Malik Amin Aslam in the cabinet.
“Aziz gave a tough time to the Chaudhrys on other fronts as well. He refused to give a free hand to Amanullah Jadoon, a relative of the Chaudhrys, who was appointed minister of the lucrative Petroleum Ministry. Aziz appointed close aide Ahmed Waqar petroleum secretary to keep a check on Jadoon,” the daily added. (ANI)

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