Categories: National

PTI nominates Sardar Usman Ahmad Khan Buzdar for Punjab CM slot

–Sources say Buzdar’s nomination nothing but a stop-gap arrangement to pave way for Shah Mahmood Qureshi

–Imran Khan shares video message stating reasons behind Buzdar’s nomination

LAHORE: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on Friday nominated Sardar Usman Ahmad Khan Buzdar for the coveted slot of Punjab chief minister.

According to sources, the decision was taken after Buzdar held an important meeting with PTI chief Imran Khan and Jahangir Tareen in Bani Gala. Imran also consulted Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) leader Chaudhry Pervez Elahi, who too endorsed Buzdar’s nomination.

Buzdar had garnered 26,897 votes from PP-286 Taunsa Sharif and defeated independent candidate Khawaja Muhammad Nizamul Mehmood.

Earlier, he remained a member of Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) from 2002-2008 and later switched to Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). In 2013, he contested the elections on PML-N’s ticket but lost to a Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) candidate.

In Musharraf era, he remained the district Nazim of Taunsa and his father, Fatah Muhammad Buzdar, is the chief of Buzdar tribe as well as a former lawmaker from Punjab.

He had recently joined PTI along with fellow tribal leader Javed Akhtar Lund.

BUZDAR NOTHING BUT A STOP-GAP ARRANGEMENT:

Source in PTI told this scribe that Buzdar’s nomination was nothing but a ‘stop-gap arrangement’ for two to three months’ timeframe. They said that the offer was also made to Dareshaks, Khosas and even to Makhdoom Hashim Jawan Bakht but all of them denied to take up the job temporarily.

“Buzdar lacks political acumen, required experience, vision and understanding to handle the affairs of a province. He would act as a puppet to a powerful operator in the PTI,” sources said, adding that it was likely that PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi would contest by-polls for a provincial seat and subsequently serve as the permanent Punjab chief minister.

They also said that the party had fielded Qureshi to be later bestowed upon the province’s top slot; however, he had lost the polls to a lesser known disgruntled PTI leader, Salman Naeem, who had contested as an independent candidate from Multan.

IMRAN KHAN SHARES REASONS BEHIND BUZDAR’S NOMINATION:

Meanwhile, PTI chief Imran Khan shared the reasons behind Buzdar’s nomination for the slot of Punjab chief minister.

In a video message, Khan explained that Buzdar belonged to the most backward and neglected area of the province. “There is no electricity, gas or continuous supply of water in the area. Buzdar knows the problems faced by people of such areas and is capable of finding the solutions to them,” he said.

Khan reiterated his commitment to bring people of neglected areas to the national mainstream and expressed hope that Buzdar would fulfil his expectations by addressing the problems faced by the poor.

It is worth mentioning here that rival Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) has already nominated ex-Punjab CM Shehbaz Sharif’s son, Hamza Shehbaz, for Punjab’s top slot.

In the 371-member Punjab Assembly, the PTI is leading with 179 seats followed by the PML-N with 164 seats, the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) with 10 seats and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) with seven seats. There are four independent candidates in the provincial legislature. At least 186 votes are required to win the chief minister, speaker and deputy speaker slots.

The PTI had won 119 seats through direct election, while 23 MPAs joined it later. Now on the basis of its 142 seats, it has been allocated 33 women’s seats and four non-Muslim’s seats.

The PML-N had won 129 seats while one independent candidate had joined it later. It has been allocated 30 women and four non-Muslim seats.

The PML-Q won seven general seats while one independent candidate joined it later. It has been allocated two women reserved seats. The PPP had won six general seats and one women seat has been given to it.

Mian Abrar

The writer heads Pakistan Today's Islamabad Bureau. He has a special focus on counter-terrorism and inter-state relations in Asia, Asia Pacific and South East Asia regions. He can be reached at hussainmian@gmail.com

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