Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz has cancelled her planned visit to London for “uninterrupted canvassing” for her ailing mother who is contesting the NA-120 by-poll in Lahore.
For the second consecutive day on Sunday, Maryam held meetings with the local bodies’ representatives of Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat in Model Town and told the party members that she was not going to London to see her mother and would rather join them in the constituency for canvassing, Dawn newspaper reported on Monday.
Maryam said: “I will start visiting the whole constituency after Eid. I will also remain among the workers till the 2018 elections.”
“The Sharif family appears to be not trusting anyone else in the party to oversee the campaign in NA-120 in their absence and, therefore, Maryam is not going to see her ailing mother,” a PML-N source told the newspaper.
“Since Maryam is quite active and ambitious in politics, she cannot take chances to hand over the campaign to anyone outside the family,” the source was quoted as saying by the daily.
Sharif’s sons — Hussain and Hassan — and daughter Asma are already with Begum Kulsoom Nawaz in London where she is undergoing treatment for throat cancer. Sharif is expected to leave for London this week.
Meanwhile, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party has announced that it will file a complaint with the poll panel against Maryam for using Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif’s secretariat for the campaign in NA-120. The by-election for the Lahore seat is scheduled for September 18.
PTI spokesman Fawad Chaudhry said that the ruling party was using state machinery in its campaign, showing no respect for the Election Commission order. “It seems the ECP is too weak to nail the ruling PML-N,” he said.
However, Punjab government’s spokesman Malik Ahmad Khan told Dawn that the building that housed the CM Secretariat in Model Town had two other portions — one used for PML-N activities and the other for public affairs units.
“Therefore, Maryam Bibi is not using the CM Secretariat,” he said.