KARACHI: Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah and Leader of the Opposition in the Sindh Assembly, Rana Ansar, engaged in their inaugural deliberation on Saturday, aimed at determining a suitable candidate for the interim provincial chief executive role.
The rendezvous took place within the precincts of the Sindh Chief Minister’s residence, where the two prominent figures exchanged felicitations for the successful culmination of the constitutionally mandated term of the Sindh Assembly. Regrettably, neither side divulged any names for the provisional Chief Minister post during this initial interaction.
As relayed by an official spokesperson of the Sindh Chief Minister’s office, both leaders harmoniously decided to reconvene the discussions on the morrow to further deliberate on the subject.
Merely a day before, on the 11th of August, the Governor of Sindh, Kamran Tessori, formally endorsed the summary submitted by CM Murad, advocating for the dissolution of the provincial assembly.
In a statement posted on the microblogging platform X, formerly recognized as Twitter, the Governor confirmed, “The formal documentation for the dissolution of the Sindh Provincial Assembly has been formalized.”
It is imperative to highlight that the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) had previously floated the names of Justice (R) Maqbool Baqir and erstwhile Sindh Chief Secretary Mumtaz Ali Shah as potential contenders for the coveted position. Conversely, the opposition had also conducted internal consultations to identify suitable candidates, including Dr. Safdar Abbasi, Ghulam Murtaza Khan Jatoi, Shoaib Siddiqqui, and Younus Dagha.
Subsequent to their deliberations, Murad Ali Shah conducted a press conference, where he expressed gratitude towards his provincial cabinet for unwavering support, especially during challenging junctures.
He lamented, “In August 2018, both the federal government and the Sindh Assembly opposition resorted to actions that defied democratic norms.” Shah underscored, “Nevertheless, PPP and my cabinet stood by me. We have navigated through formidable circumstances.”
The Chief Minister also criticized former Prime Minister Imran Khan for what he deemed as ‘disavowing the Sindh government’. Shah emphasized that the federal government’s actions, combined with the resistance from the provincial opposition, exacerbated the intricacies of overseeing the Sindh Assembly.
Furthermore, Chief Minister Murad clarified that if a consensus regarding the interim Chief Minister could not be attained with the opposition leader, the matter would be referred to the provincial assembly’s parliamentary committee. Should the committee fail to reach a resolution, the responsibility of selecting the provisional Chief Minister would then be entrusted to the provincial election commission.
He unequivocally affirmed his intention to continue his responsibilities until the appointment of an interim Chief Minister.
Meanwhile, in a conversation with a private television channel, Rana Ansar divulged that neither she nor the Chief Minister had tabled any nominees for the role of the interim Chief Minister.
Elaborating on the situation, Ansar disclosed, “The Chief Minister of Sindh has indicated ongoing discussions within his leadership circle regarding the nominee.” She further noted her ongoing consultations with various opposition factions on the issue.
This nascent dialogue between the two influential leaders is set to reconvene on the subsequent day, underscoring the gravity of the decision at hand.