ISLAMABAD - Mehmood Khan Achakzai’s Pashtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP) is one of those political parties that have lost grounds in Pashtun-dominated province of KP especially after showing abysmal performance in the Local Bodies (LB) polls held on May 30.

Achakzai’s ethnic party could secure only one seat in the entire Khyber Pakhtunkhwa thanks to its Bannu chapter that clinched a single general seat out of around 42,000 seats in the province.

According to the consolidated results issued by Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), the PkMAP is the one that has obtained minimum votes in the province even lagging behind less-known party, Pakistan Rah-e-Haq Party that managed to win three tehsil seats in the province.

Despite that the nationalist PkMAP has its provincial party organizational structure in KP; its office-bearers are at a loss to understand why the ethnic Pashtun party always fails to make inroads into the province.

“Despite our efforts to establish the party here, we have miserably failed to convince people in Pashtunkhwa that it is platform of Pashtuns in KP. It is rather a Balochistan based party,” a key office-bearer of PkMAP in KP told The Nation Monday.

Sounding disheartened over what he said the oblivious attitude of party head Mehmood Khan Achkazai to the issues faced to people in KP, he said supporters of PkMAP had started doubting the ‘uprightness’ of Achakzai that he said suddenly vanished with the change of regimes.

“He (Achakzai) could not spare time to interact with IDPs in Bannu. He is least bothered about who rules KP. Sometimes we think as if Awami National Party (ANP) and Mehmood Khan Achakzai have divided Pashtuns with the former holding sway in KP and the later in Balochistan,” a disgruntled PkMAP leader narrates his ordeal.

But leaders of ANP too are not happy with the recent overtures of Achakzai on issues like route change in China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), irregularities in LB polls in KP and issues faced to people in KP with ANP leadership arguing Achakzai should have raised his voice by supporting what ANP chanted.

“Mehmood Khan (as they call) did not participate in any APC called by ANP in protest against change route of CPEC. Second, we don’t understand what his principled stand is on national and provincial issues,” an ANP stalwart said.

It has been observed that Achkzai despite regularly attending sessions of National Assembly avoids taking the floor and talking on important issues although he was famous for making hard hitting speeches when his party sat on opposition benches.

But Senator Usman Kakar, who is parliamentary leader of PkMAP in Senate, argued that his party needs more time to establish roots in Khyber Pashtunkhwa and acknowledged that the party has not expedited efforts to boost its electoral campaign in KP.

“Other parties work in KP for decades. Ours party has stepped in the province quite late. Yes, we need extra efforts in the area and we plan to take some extraordinary decisions in order to win hearts and minds of people in KP,” the Senator remarked.