By Syed Talat Hussain
That the Pakistan People’s Party’s present leadership has made such a glorious mess of the country is now an open secret of folk lore proportions. Their management of the party’s own affairs is even worse, leaving everyone with the impression that perhaps the lord of the party, president Asif Ali Zardari, is only capable of causing deterioration in everything he touches, minus of course his personal fortunes that continue to multiply. Sindh, the home base of the party, and the abiding source of its political strength, is in terrible disarray.
This fact is captured in the most scandalous form, in the Mirza-saga that seems to have no end. The Sindh home minister, Manzoor Wasan, has again laid into the former minister, Zulfikar Mirza saying that he owed everything to Asif Ali Zardari, from his sugar mills to even his clothes. He has accused Mr Mirza of being a goon and a thug and of abusing his authority when he held the office of the home minister. Mr Mirza shall surely hit back, and as in the past, he would tear Mr Wasan apart by his dexterous lash of the tongue.
And thus the saga would continue, dominating media space, wasting national hours, and filling the hearts of ordinary Pakistanis with more despair. Mr Mirza’s earlier accusations against his party heads and his virulent attack on the top leadership of Muttahida Qaumi Movement, who he has said are conspiring to break up the country, required either total rejection or serious probe. The party leadership has done neither. Instead they have allowed Mr Mirza to continue with his tirade, provoking strong reaction all around, Mr Wasan’s statement being the latest of that series of responses. Mr Mirza’s wife continues to hold the portfolio of the speaker of the national assembly, and privately there are any number of PPP leaders in Sindh who echo Mirza’s views albeit less ferociously.
In this bewildering array of contradictory polices, compromises and back-stabbing, the party stands to lose its reputation and eventually its pet voters, who see themselves being pulled in different directions by leaders speaking from bother corners of their mouth. But that scenario—the party losing its motivation and the sense of belonging to a well-defined ideology—matters little to those who are in charge of this mighty political force. For them the PPP is not the real party—- the real party is the endless spree of making money that they are enjoying. The rest does not matter.