WANA the headquarters of South Waziristan Agency, which was once considered a base line of Taliban, has been found in a grip of political fever while heading towards the first ever party based elections in FATA. Contrary to this, in other parts of the country, candidates for upcoming elections of three mainstream political parties bore the brunt of violent incidents and many of them lost their lives.
A total of 50 election commission validated candidates are contesting against the slot of NA-41 in South Waziristan Agency.
Among them the most noticeable with respect to their political rallies are; Ayaz Wazir of ANP, Ghalib Khan of PML(N), Maulana Zard Wali Kahn of JUI(S), Maulana Abdul Malik of JUI(F), Naseer Ullah Khan and Ali Khan Wazir as independent candidates.
All of them have launched their electioneering in the area. In this connection the first ever political gathering was arranged by Ayaz Wazir in Baa Khan Chock Wana Bazar. The gathering was attended by a large number of people from all walks of life including elders, business community, government servants and religious scholars. It was the first ever public gathering of ANP in the militancy hit area of South Waziristan. Ayaz Wazir while speaking at the occasion highlighted the sacrifices being rendered by their party leadership and workers.
“Our party (ANP) has introduced a number of reforms into FCR and the struggle would continue till its elimination”, said the young enthusiastic Ayaz Wazir. Participation of senior politician belonging to Wana Nisar Ahmad, known as Nisar Lala among locals, attracted more people to the rally. Nisar lala supported the candidature of Ayaz Wazir.
Former MNA from NA-41 South Waziristan Agency, Maulvi Abdul Malik, running under the party ticket of JUI-F, is facing severe criticism from all quarters of his constituency in the upcoming elections. In this connection a protest rally was held by the people of Angoor Adda, Hamrang, Raghzai, Sholam and Bzsha ghundai in Wana Bazaar in front of his election office. The participants of rally were carrying black flags, holding placards and banners inscribed with the slogans demanding accountability of the said MNA. A congregation that included Taliban commander Gul Fay Khan (brother of late Taliban Commander Rafay Khan) barred Maulvi Abdul Malik from entering area Azam Warsak in Tehsil Bermil while canvassing.
Another independent candidate from the same constituency, Ali Khan, held a public gathering at “Danna” locality of South Waziristan Agency, eleven kilometers in the west of Wana bazaar on Tuesday. Ali Khan stressed upon educating people of the area and termed it the way of emancipation of tribal people from the yoke of underdevelopment. Naseer Ullah, another independent candidate, held his public meeting on Tuesday in Speen Samar Bagh area of tehsil Wana Bazaar located in the east of Wana bazaar. While addressing the gathering Naseer Ullah stressed the locals to cast their vote according to their will as it is a national obligation upon them.
Like Naseer Ullah Ghalib Khan, a candidate of PML (N), also provoked the people that the people must show open mindedness that must be reflected from their votes. He addressed a public rally arranged at Nargassy area of Azam Warsak, the other day. He further said that he would work for the restoration of peace to the area and enhancing education on priority basis, “Once the peace is restored to the area our next aim would be to design a good educational system”. He also denounced FCR and pledged to work for its elimination.
Although the mainstream political parties have arranged their rallies in the area which is spreading hope among the people regarding peaceful elections but at the same time a fear to sabotage the elections still looms around.
The Taliban have declared the secular parties of the country to be their main target in the upcoming election and are persistently targeting them. So far ANP has remained the sole party who suffered the most in terms of human losses at the hands of Taliban. The latest one was the attack on ANP senior leader Ghulam Ahmad Bilour at Yakatoot area of Peshawar on Monday evening but the daring ANP candidates have so far managed to conduct their rallies in war tore area of Wana successfully.
Lal Wazir contributed from south waziristan.
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