Murtaza Wahab elected Mayor Karachi. Hafiz Naeemur rejects elections JI, PPP workers clash outside the Arts Council of Pakistan after mayor Karachi election

Barrister Murtaza Wahab Siddiuqi elected Mayor Karachi while securing 173 votes

Engineer Hafiz Naeemur Rehman remains runner up while securing 160 votes

JI, PPP workers clash outside the Arts Council of Pakistan after mayor Karachi election

Asif Zardari congratulates all mayors, deputy mayors, district councilors & ‘town’s chairman and deputy chairman’

Hafiz Naeemur Rehman rejects Karachi’s mayor elections, Says democracy has been raided by abducting members

Sirajul Haq raises questions on the mayoral elections

KARACHI ( Web News )

Shortly after reports of Barrister Murtaza Wahab Siddiqui winning the Karachi mayor elections surfaced, clashes between Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) supporters were reported outside the city’s Arts Council of Pakistan where voting had been under way on Thursday.

According to unofficial results, PPP candidate Murtaza Wahab won the election for the seat of the mayor by acquiring 173 votes while JI candidate Hafiz Naeemur Rehman remained the runner-up while securing 160 votes.

The respective deputy mayor candidates of the PPP and JI were Salman Abdullah Murad and Saifuddin. PPP canaidate Salman Abdullah Murad secured victory while securing 173 votes and JI candidate Saifuddin secured 160 votes and remained the runner up.

A result is yet to be officially announced. However, immediately after unofficial results were reported, scuffles erupted between JI and PPP workers.

South Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Syed Asad Raza told media that some JI supporters started raising slogans against their rivals which resulted in a clash between both parties and a “law and order situation”.

The official said the police attempted to control the situation by charging batons against enraged supporters. “During this, two to three JI members were injured.”

SSP Raza added that currently, a “peaceful sit-in” at the Arts Council Roundabout by the JI workers was under way.

Meanwhile, a statement issued by the traffic police said M.R.Kiani Road towards Shaheen Complex was closed for “security reasons” and traffic was being diverted to alternative roads.

The PPP’s Media Cell quoted party Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari congratulating all mayors, deputy mayors, district councilors, and “town’s chairman and deputy chairman”.

Especially conveying his felicitations to Murtaza Wahab, the tweet quoted Asif Zardari as saying, “The success of local elected representatives is the result of the workers’ hard work.” He also directed the victors to start their work from today.

Separately, in a statement issued by PPP’s Media Cell, Foreign Minister and PPP Chairman and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari congratulated Wahab. He said PPP’s victory today did not just belong to the party but the entire country. “This success is the result of the long struggle and sacrifices of the jiyalas of Karachi.”

The statement quoted Bilawal as saying that the local government problems of every street, neighborhood, and area of ​​Karachi would be “solved without discrimination”.

In an official statement, Sindh Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Hussain Shah also congratulated, saying, “Today, Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari’s vision of a jiyala becoming a mayor has won.”

On the other hand, talking to the media in Karachi, Sindh Information Minister Sharjeel Inam Memon termed the JI a “fascist party”. He said they were allowed to protest peacefully but warned of taking action if they took the law into their own hands.

“A fascist party like the Jamaat handed weapons to students,” he said.

Memon claimed the JI “wanted the PPP to get them votes from the PTI”. He asked, “If the PTI supporters are sitting at their homes [and] no one is voting [for them] then what can we do?”

The PPP leader asserted, “If the JI would do hooliganism, we will not let anyone take the law into their hands. They can hold peaceful protests within the law. If anyone does vandalism, then the law will come into action.”

Meanwhile, JI Pakistan Emir Sirajul Haq raised questions on the mayoral elections. “The election of Karachi’s mayor through the kidnapping of elected candidates, buying of votes, and rigging is a big question on the Constitution and democracy,” he said in a tweet.

Terming the polls a “mockery of democracy”, he alleged that the collusion between the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and the Sindh government was “evident”.

In another tweet, the JI chief said his party would observe “Black Day” across the country tomorrow (June 16) and requested those who respected the Constitution to participate.

Separately, the JI also wrote a letter to the ECP, claiming that the electoral body had failed to fulfill its responsibility of holding free and fair polls.

It stated that the party had been repeatedly writing to the watchdog and apprised it of the “unethical” and “illegal” practices of the PPP but regretted that timely action was not taken.

“On the occasion of the mayor’s election, the gates of the voting hall were locked and 29 PTI members were forcibly abducted from their homes by their elite force in the process,” JI alleged, adding that the “majority was converted into a minority through deception”.

On the other hand, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi said, “PPP may have won but democracy has lost.”

Earlier, voting for the office of Karachi mayor and the deputy through a show of hands took place, with PPP’s Wahab and JI’s Rehman in a tough contest.

The polling process remained largely peaceful throughout the day. Entry to the venue was closed at 11am and members were not allowed to enter after that.

According to media reports, 32 out of the 62 PTI members failed to appear to cast their vote. Subsequently, the total number of UC members present was 333 out of 366.

Both Rehman and Wahab reached the polling venue amid huge crowds of supporters. JI supporters could be heard chanting “Hafiz, Hafiz” repeatedly as the JI candidate entered the Arts Council premises.

Speaking to reporters outside the voting venue, Wahab claimed his party had the required numbers to win the elections.

“Our numbers are complete. If Jamaat-e-Islami’s numbers are higher, will respect them,” Wahab — also the former Karachi administrator — said. He added, “We will have to come out of allegations. We will have to work together on Karachi’s master plan.”

Meanwhile, three detained PTI leaders, including Firdous Shamim Naqvi, were brought to the Arts Council of Pakistan in armoured police vans. The PTI also shared a video of Naqvi exiting the van.

As the polling began, PPP Senator Saeed Ghani claimed the PPP had a strength of 173 with the PML-N and Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) supporting it.

In a tweet, he said, “All 173 members of the PPP, PML-N and JUI-F have entered the election hall.” In a prior tweet, he claimed the JI had not gathered its members even once in a show of power.

He said, “The PPP gathered its members twice during the election campaign for mayor/deputy mayor. The members’ attendance on both occasions was 100 percent.

“Hafiz Naeem could not gather his members at one location even once. Today’s result is clear,” he added.

Although the PPP lacked a simple majority, it had emerged as the single-largest party in the 366-strong City Council — the electoral college for mayor and deputy mayor — following the January 15 local government elections and subsequent allocation of reserved seats.

It is worth mentioning here that Barrister Murtaza Wahab Siddiqui holds a B.Com degree from the University of Karachi, an LLB from the University of London and a Bar at Law from Lincoln’s Inn. He has served as an advocate of the High Court of Sindh and held several advisory roles in the Sindh government, including adviser on law, information, anti-corruption, environment and coastal development.

He is currently an adviser on the law to the Sindh CM and the spokesperson of the Sindh government. Wahab was briefly a senator and ran as a PPP candidate from PS-111 in the 2018 provincial elections but was defeated by PTI’s Imran Ismail, who later became the governor of Sindh.

He is son of late Fouzia Wahab who served as information secretary to the PPP.

Meanwhile Engineer Hafiz Naeemur Rehman is the Emir of the JI’s Karachi chapter and holds a civil engineering degree from NED University and a master’s degree from Karachi University in Islamic history. He has been a member of JI since 2000 and was appointed as the Emir of the JI Karachi chapter in 2013.

He is also the President of the Alkhidmat Foundation Karachi chapter, an NGO associated with JI. Water shortage and drainage issues are of significant importance to him, and he is committed to seeing the K-IV project to completion. He has been a vocal critic of the privatisation of public institutions such as KE and Karachi Water and Sewerage Board

Hafiz Naeemur Rehman rejects Karachi’s mayor elections.

Emir Jamaat-e-Islami Karachi, Engineer Hafiz Naeemur Rehman while rejecting Karachi’s mayor elections, has said that democracy has been raided by abducting the members.  He said that Karachiites would be freed from this dacoity.

Addressing a press conference in Karachi on Thursday, Emir Jamaat-e-Islami Karachi, Engineer Hafiz Naeemur Rehman said that mayor would be selected who would have real mandate of the city, i.e. Jamaat-e-Islami and added that they would fight the case of the citizens of Karachi at each and every forum.

He said that mandate of the city was looted through the use of power and added the parties which obtained only 300000 votes got the mayor selected with the use of government’s powers, abducting the members and by raiding the democracy against Jamaat-e-Islami and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) who bagged more than 900000 votes in the city of Karachi.

He further said that it is a shameful as well as condemnable act and continued if today some party would have majority of numbers and succeeded they would surely congratulate it but today the mandate of the masses was occupied which is why they reject it, terming it unacceptable.

Hafiz Naeemur Rehman said that people of the city used their vote in favour of them but fake delimitations were formed for the sake of benefiting a party. He said they had accepted this challenge because they were not holding elections and added allowed holding of elections that they would defeat the opponents in those delimitations.

He said that there were faulty voter lists but instead of all this, they organized elections campaigns. He added that masses of the city were suffering due to lack of development works in the city, saying they were in favour of corruption-free system.