Islamabad, Mar 10: PPP Chairman Asif Ali Zardari is believed to have decided to take over as Prime Minister of Pakistan after three months, The News Daily reported on Monday.
The paper said Zardari had reportedly shared the "multi-million dollar secret" with his party MPs from Hyderabad region on Saturday night when he told them that he would bring in a Prime Minister from Punjab for 90 days and then become the Prime Minister himself after contesting elections. The Prime Minister hopeful, Amin Fahim, told the paper that he too had heard from partymen that Zardari had told members of the National Assembly that he has decided to become Prime Minister.
However, Fahim also said that he would not believe hearsay and that he would be convinced only when Zardari himself says the same.
The paper stated this is the third major policy shift in Zardari's stance in the last 60 days.
First, he had announced that Amin Fahim would take over as Prime Minister, then he changed his mind and started talking about a Prime Minister from Punjab — after backing Yousaf Raza Gillani, Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Ahmed Mukhtar — and now he wants to keep the post for himself.
"Now, finally he is believed to have decided to become the candidate for the top post, after pitting the top four leaders against each other," the paper stated.
"The four otherwise shrewd politicians were smartly made to fight each other, so that instead of uniting against him at any stage, none of them could pose any challenge for him at the time of the decision of the prime ministership," the News Daily further reported.
It said Zardari has decided to take over as Prime Minister in deference to the aspirations of the Sindhis who strongly feel that the Prime Minister should be from their province.
At Saturday's meeting, Zardari is said to have sought the opinion of National Assembly member, Fahmida Mirza, who along with many others immediately endorsed the idea.
The MPs felt that his decision to become Prime Minister might stop the likely rift in the party which became pronounced after four contenders laid their claim to the post.
The daily quoted sources in the party to say that when the turn of another MP Nawab Yousaf Talpur came, he said nobody could stop Zardari if he wanted to become Prime Minister.
However, it is said that Fahim would be 'rewarded' for his loyalty and made interim Prime Minister for three months.