Negative comments attributed to me about Shehbaz Sharif incorrect: Nawaz

Insight Online News

Islamabad, Aug 26 : PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif has dissociated himself from “negative comments” about his younger brother and Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, expressing hope that the premier would steer the country out of the challenging circumstances facing the country currently, media reports said.

“The negative comments attributed to me about PM Shehbaz Sharif are misleading and incorrect,” Nawaz said in a late night tweet on Thursday, without elaborating what comments he was referring to, Dawn reported.

The former Prime Minister added that he remained hopeful that “sincere and tireless efforts by ‘SS’ (Shehbaz Sharif) under the most challenging circumstances will bear fruit and he will steer the country out of the mess created by Imran Khan”.

Nawaz’s clarification comes amid indications of an internal rift within the party, Dawn reported.

Signs of the purported friction were visible as early as May, less than two months into the PML-N coalition coming to power following the ouster of former prime minister Imran Khan through a no-confidence vote.

PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz, who was once seen as the party supremo’s heir apparent, had openly endorsed at a May 19 rally in Sargodha Imran’s demand for fresh elections while the new coalition setup was struggling in the face of an economic crisis.

At the Sargodha rally, Maryam had been of the view that it was wiser to opt for fresh elections than burden the masses with price hikes.

Maryam’s remarks had come a day after the ruling coalition decided to complete its term, which ends in August 2023.

More recently, there were reports of Nawaz Sharif being upset over the PML-N’s loss in the crucial by-polls on 20 seats of the Punjab Assembly – a defeat that paved the way for his party to lose the country’s most populous province to the PTI, Dawn reported.

Shehbaz’s son and Punjab’s embattled Chief Minister at the time, Hamza Shehbaz, left for London earlier this month to reportedly give an explanation to Nawaz Sharif for the PML-N’s loss in the by-polls and him losing the CM’s office to Parvez Elahi, the joint candidate of the PTI-PML-Q alliance.

“Hamza will have to satisfy his uncle for his poor performance being the CM and his father’s flawed strategy in the face of Khan’s aggressive campaign during the by-polls,” a PML-N insider told Dawn.

Conjecture about rifts in the PML-N found further ground after the Shehbaz government announced yet another increase in the price of petrol on August 15.

Following the raise, Maryam tweeted that Nawaz had strongly opposed the decision and even said he couldn’t burden the people further and that he was not in favour of the decision.

IANS / AGENCY

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