ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Rehman Malik on Wednesday requested Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-F’s chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman to rejoin the coalition government. However, the JUI-F chief rejected the request and said his party had ratified the move and would not change its stance in the current circumstances.
Rehman Malik had made the request during a meeting with Fazlur Rehman at the latter’s residence, DawnNews quoted JUI-F sources as saying.
Later on, a delegation of 10 MNAs from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) also met with Fazlur Rehman.
In his meeting with the MNAs from Fata, Fazlur Rehman rejected their request for the JUI-F chief to soften his stance toward Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani.
Fazlur Rehman said he would not change his posture as “the prime minister had sabotaged the Pakistan People’s Party’s reconciliation policy”.
According to an AP report, Fazlur Rehman’s aide, Hafiz Hussain Ahmad, said JUI-F would only return to the government if President Zardari sacked Prime Minister Gilani. The premier must be punished for stirring up tensions when he sacked a JUI-F lawmaker from his Cabinet, Ahmad said.
The JUI-F has also refused an offer to nominate a replacement Cabinet minister from its ranks, the report said.
”We will only consider working with the ruling party if President Asif Ali Zardari sacks Gilani,” Ahmad said following Fazlur Rehman’s meeting with Rehman Malik.