Home Latest News PPP Names Murtaza Wahab for Karachi Mayor Candidate

PPP Names Murtaza Wahab for Karachi Mayor Candidate

Sindh government spokesperson is currently unelected and will have to win local body elections within six months if elected mayor

by Staff Report

File photo of Murtaza Wahab

The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) on Monday announced that Murtaza Wahab—currently unelected—will be its candidate for mayor of Karachi, as both it and the opposition Jamaat-e-Islami prepare for the mayoral elections due on June 15.

Following the local government elections, the PPP has emerged as the single-largest party with 155 members, including reserved seats, in the 367-strong house. The PPP has already announced a coalition with the PMLN and the JUIF, bringing its total to 175, still lower than the simple majority of 179 votes required to elect the mayor. Contesting against Wahab would be Jamaat-e-Islami (JI)’s Hafiz Naeemur Rehman, whose party has secured 130 seats, including reserved, in the local government. The party has entered into a coalition with the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), bringing their total to 193, sufficient to win the mayoral seat. However, the PPP has hinted that it has the support of “some” within the PTI-JI combine that would enable Wahab to be elected mayor.

The PPP has reportedly also finalized the name of Salman Abdullah Murad for the slot of Karachi deputy mayor. It similarly picked Kashif Shoro as its candidate for the Hyderabad mayor. Speaking with media, Sindh Local Government Minister Nasir Hussain Shah said no one would be pressured to vote for anyone. However, he added, if anyone decided to vote as per their “conscience,” then that decision should be respected.

In a series of posts on Twitter, Wahab said he could not express the extent of his gratitude to his party leadership for choosing him as a candidate for the Karachi mayor. Thanking party workers who “worked so hard to win us the city elections,” he vowed that he would work with them all to deliver as per the people’s aspirations, in line with the guidance of party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari.

“I am a Karachiite—the city is in my veins and nothing would be of greater honor for me but to work for the betterment of our great city,” he said, adding that he would work with all stakeholders, political and administrative, if elected mayor. “I will try my best to fulfil the responsibilities and expectations of people of my city and serve with zeal and zest,” he said.

Separately, in a Twitter post, the PPP chairman congratulated all the PPP workers who won the local body elections, adding it was now time to focus on serving the people. “I have full faith that Mr. Shoro and Mr. Wahab will be the first, but not the last, PPP mayors of our two great cities,” he said.

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