1) Results of November 1988 elections; 2) What problems have members of the Muslim League experienced in Pakistan since the elections? [PAK1580]

1) The Pakistan People's Party (PPP), led by Benazir Bhutto, received the most seats during the 16 November elections. However, because the PPP did not have the majority of seats, Ms. Bhutto entered into discussions with smaller parties to form a coalition government. Ultimately, the Mohajir Quami Movement (MQM) added its 13 seats to the PPP's. [ "The Choice of the Nation", Asiaweek, 16 December 1988, p. 24.] There are 237 seats in the National Assembly, of which 205 were contested. [ "Bhutto does her Arithmetic", Asiaweek, 2 December 1988, p. 26. Thirty seats are reserved for women and minorities, and two seats were deferred due to the death of candidates. ] The PPP won 92 seats, and the second place rival, the Islamic Democratic Alliance (IDA or IJI), led by Nawaz Sharif, won 55 seats. [ Ibid. Keesing's (below) maintains that the IDA won 54 seats.
Ahmed Rashid, "Testing time, again", Far Eastern Economic Review, 26 January 1989, (the Keesing's article indicates 93).]

The results of the provincial elections proved even more inconclusive. The Chief Ministers of Sindh and North-West Frontier Province are both PPP members. In Baluchistan, however, the IDA candidate forged a shaky alliance with the PPP to become the Chief Minister, and in Punjab, the IDA has firm control of the provincial assembly, with Nawaz Sharif as the Chief Minister. [ Rashid, Ahmed, "The morning after", Far Eastern Economic Review, 15 December 1988, p. 14.] This is the first time in Pakistan's history that different parties have controlled the National Assembly and the Punjab provincial assembly. The IDA control of Punjab is seen as a serious challenge to Bhutto's national government because the Punjab is a rich region with almost two-thirds of the country's 100 million people. Punjabis have considerable influence in political, military, and business circles. [ Ibid.]
2) No information on "problems" experienced by members of the Muslim League since the November 1988 elections is presently available to the IRBDC. The Pakistan Muslim League (PML) was the dominant political party in Pakistan from 1986 until 29 May 1988, when Zia ul-Haq dissolved the government of (former) Prime Minister Mohammed Khan Junejo (PML party). Before the end of August 1988, the PML had broken into two factions. [ "Pakistan Moslem League breaks into two factions", Globe and Mail, 27 August 198; Husain Haqqani, "Shifting Sands of Patronage", Far Eastern Economic Review, 22 September 1988, p. 35; Husain Haqqani, "Power up for Grabs", Far Eastern Economic Review, 1 September 1988, p. 12.] The two groups were the "Fida" faction (led by Mr. Fida Muhammad Khan, the former governor of the North-West Frontier Provinces, and Mr Nawaz Sharif, the Chief Minister of Punjab province), and the "Junejo" faction (led by former Prime Minister Mohammed Khan Junejo). The Junejo group joined with the Tehrik-i-Istiqlal and the Jamaat-i Ulemi-i Pakistan on October 9 to form the Pakistan Awami Tehrik (PPA, Pakistan People's Alliance). [ Keesing's Record of World Events, Volume XXXIV, December 1988, p. 36347.] The stated aim of the PPA was to work for an Islamic, welfare, parliamentary system. [Ibid.] The Fida faction had joined with seven other parties and groups to form the Islami Jamhoori Ittehad (IJI, Islamic Democratic Alliance). The other parties in the IJI included the Jamaati-i Islami, the National People's Party, the Jamiatul Ulema-e Islam (Darkhwasty Group), the Markazi Jamaat-i Ahle Hadith (Lakvi Group), Jamaat-ul Mashaikh (Sahebzada Fazle Haq Group), Hizbe Jihad, the Azad Group, and the Nizami-i Mustafa Group. [ Ibid.]

On 15 October 1988, the Junejo PML faction joined the IJI, and its former alliance partners formed the Pakistan Awami Ittehad. [ Ibid.] The Pakistan Awami Ittehad gained only three seats in the November elections. [ Ibid.] Nawaz Sharif was the only leader of the IJI to gain a seat in the national assembly. [Keesing's, p. 36348.]

Although ethnic and religious tensions have flared in recent months, this does not appear to be linked to the political affiliations of those groups involved in inter-communal clashes. [ See the attached article by Anthony Hyman, "The waning of Benazir's honeymoon", The Middle East, May 1989, pp. 5-7; "Religious Row: Fundamentalists take on Benazir", India Today, 31 March 1989, p. 159; "Miffed Minorities", India Today, 31 March 1989, p. 160.]