Imran Khan’s first wife Jemima Goldsmith was one of the many people who congratulated him yesterday. The cricketer-turned-politician’s political party, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), had emerged as the single-largest party in the general elections, pushing him closer towards the Pakistani PM’s office.
Jemima, a British socialite and heiress, praised Imran for his “tenacity, belief & refusal to accept defeat”.
22 years later, after humiliations, hurdles and sacrifices, my sons’ father is Pakistan’s next PM. It’s an incredible lesson in tenacity, belief & refusal to accept defeat. The challenge now is to remember why he entered politics in the 1st place. Congratulations @ImranKhanPTI
Jemima Goldsmith (@Jemima_Khan) July 26, 2018
After a nine-year long marriage, Jemima divorced from Imran Khan in 2004 citing that it was becoming “difficult for Jemima to adapt to the political life of Imran Khan in Pakistan”.
Sources stressed that the couple had separated on amicable terms. Jemima even kept using Imran’s last name long after the divorce, reverting to her maiden name only after Imran married second wife Reham in 2014.
Jemima also stood by Imran when he was briefly jailed in 2007, publicly criticising the then-President Pervez Musharraf for putting Imran behind bars.
“I am worried, we are all worried. This is just one more sign that Musharraf has become one of Pakistan’s most brutal and oppressive dictators ever,” A 2007 report in The Telegraph quoted Jemima.
Imran Khan is also said to maintain cordial relations with Jemima’s brother Zac Goldsmith, for whom he campaigned when the latter ran for mayor of London in 2016.
Jemima even enjoys a bit of a fan base in Pakistan, some of whom wished they could have her as Pakistan’s first lady.
m.iqbal (@miqpkn) July 25, 2018
Jemima Goldsmith’s open support for Imran Khan rings in contrast to second wife Reham Khan’s brickbats.
Reham, a Pakistani journalist and film producer, was married to Imran for about 10 months in 2015. In public domain, she has not been shy of slamming Imran left, right and centre.
Recently, leaked excerpts from her tell-all autobiography hit the ceiling with a slew of salacious claims. In them, she alleges that Imran had confessed to her about having had homosexual encounters, illegitimate children from different women and drug addiction.
Even as the news of Imran Khan’s victory made headlines, unlike encouraging Jemima, Reham wrote that Pakistan is “stuck” with him.
“I am not surprised. Because I knew why this was happening. This is why I wrote the book. I did not write it to impact the election result, I wrote it precisely because no one could have stopped the plan,” Reham wrote in her piece for The Print.
Unsurprisingly, Reham and Jemima don’t seem to be very chummy either.
In June, Jemima threatened to sue Reham if her autobiography is released in the United Kingdom. She did, however, remove the tweet later.
“On Reham Khan’s book I’ve been assured that it’s too libellous to be published in the UK but if it is published here, I will be suing for defamation & breach of privacy on behalf of my (then) 16 yr old son & in relation to the moronic, re-hashed Zionist conspiracy theories. Sigh,” Jemima had tweeted.
In the end, both the women seem to have moved on well in their individual lives. Imran Khan too has found himself another wife, Bushra Bibi, who also voiced her support for her husband’s win.
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