December 27, 2013 will be different. It will be the first time the PPP is out of power since the murder of Benazir Bhutto in 2007. The party managed to win the election held soon after her death and stay in government for the next five years.
Those were most tumultuous five years, both for the party and the country. Its performance was generally considered a mixed bag. It was successful in addressing the structural foundations of the country. But as the next general election drew near, the party remained unsuccessful in tackling what became the most pressing problem of the country -- the power crisis.
In the four years after the restoration of the chief justice, the party remained embroiled in court cases that involved allegations of corruption, leading to the ouster of not less than an elected prime minister at the hands of the Supreme Court. It took an ideological position against militancy and terrorism along with a few other parties. But, ultimately, it felt constrained in solving the governance issues and providing service delivery as a consequence of these two reasons. The electorate was a little less forgiving and punished the party for keeping the country in dark, literally, year after year.
This time, the PPP defeat was phenomenal. The fall of a party of such national stature ought to have shaken it to the core. There should have been indepth introspective exercises, inquiries conducted, seminars and conventions held to assess the causes of this defeat. But there seems a strange inaction in the most formidable political force, leading one to conclude that it is perhaps happy to be reduced to the status of a nationalist party of Sindh.
The results of the local bodies election in Balochistan are an eye-opener for anyone except the PPP. Nobody has raised a sound against its virtual rout from the province.
In today’s Special Report, we have tried to focus on Pakistan People’s Party.