Islamabad (March 11, 2018): PTI Chairman Imran Khan on Sunday announced to support Independent candidate from Balochistan Sadiq Sanjrani as chairman of the senate along with support for PPP candidate on deputy chairman slot.
“I have promised the chief minister Balochistan to support PPP candidate on deputy chairman senate slot,” he said.
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The chief minister said that the decision from Imran Khan would further strengthen the federation and also asked Imran Khan to establish a cancer hospital in Quetta also.
Khan thanked the arrival of the senators and the chief minister at his Bani Gala residence and said that the decision taken by him was aimed at taking out of the box decisions to end the sense of deprivation among the Baloch people.
He also assured to put forward the proposal to establish Shaukat Khanum hospital in Quetta before the board of the hospital.
Earlier, the PTI and PPP had given the authority to Bizenjo to bring forth a joint candidate for the slots with help of the newly-elected independent senators from Balochistan.
Talking to the media in Faisalabad, where he is visiting the party’s membership camps, Imran said, “God willing, history will be made if and when a Senate chairman is made from Balochistan for the first time in the country’s history”.
The PTI chief said the province had been neglected since ages, leading to a sense of deprivation among the people which is exploited by the nationalists and militants.
“This will strengthen the federation,” said Imran, adding that the party has, for the sake of the country, also supported the PPP’s candidate for the deputy chairman slot as per Bizenjo’s panel.
Similarly, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) will hold a final meeting today, under the chair of party supremo and former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, to decide on their candidates.
Sources said that in case the PPP doesn’t propose the name of the last Senate Chairman Raza Rabbani, the PML-N will bring forth its own candidate.
Earlier, Nawaz had proposed that the party would support Rabbani’s re-election as Senate chairman but the PPP dismissed the move.
After a meeting of the PML-N and its allies on Saturday, National Party (NP) leader Hasil Bizenjo had said that apart from his party, the PML-N had the support of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F), Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) and Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP).
The NP leader added that there had been no discussions in the meeting for appointing the chairman from Balochistan. “This is not an issue of Balochistan, rather an issue for the allied parties,” he had said.
Moreover, the PPP will also hold consultations today to finalise their nominees for the Senate posts.
Sources said PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari will consul party leaders to finalise their candidates.
Senate session on Monday
President Mamnoon Hussain has summoned a session of the Senate on March 12, in which newly-elected senators will be sworn in at 10am.
Nomination papers for Senate chairman and deputy chairman will then be submitted in the Senate Secretariat at noon.
The nomination papers will be reviewed at 2pm after which another session will be summoned at 4pm the same day, when the chairman and deputy chairman will be elected.
Following the election, the Senate chairman will take oath, and will then swear in his deputy.
After the oath-taking, the session will be adjourned until further notice.
The PML-N and independents backed by the party have 33 members in the Senate following the March 3 election.
If you add the party’s allies — five senators of the PkMAP, five of NP, four of JUI-F and one from PML-Functional — then the count goes up to 48.
The PML-N and its allies claim that they are ahead in the numbers game, and are certain of support from five senators of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P), two of eight from FATA and one each from the Awami National Party and Balochistan National Party (Mengal).
If the PML-N indeed gets support from these nine senators, then the party will have a total of 57 members. A total of 53 votes are needed to win the posts.