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November 17, 2015

PML-N undecided about change of guard in Balochistan

National

November 17, 2015

ISLAMABAD: The ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) seems to be undecided whether to replace Dr Abdul Malik’s government with its own in Balochistan or to maintain a status quo as the deadline in Murree agreement expires on December 4, according to which the new chief minister is to take oath on December 5.
A campaign spearheaded by the Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP) in favour of incumbent Chief Minister Abdul Malik has not been accepted by the provincial parliamentary group of the PML-N which needs support of the JUI-F in case its coalition partners pull their support back.
The party leadership is said to be in two minds about the implementation of the Murree agreement in order to maintain cordial relations with the Baloch and Pakhtun nationalist parties owing to the critical situation prevalent in the province, the party sources said.
It would be recalled that the PML-N had emerged largest parliamentary group in the province in 2013 general polls and under parliamentary practice it should have led the new government.
However, the PkMAP headed by Mehmood Khan Achakzai extended support to the National Party’s president Dr Malik whose party was at number three and three parties reached an agreement which envisaged rotation of chief minister after half the parliamentary tenure expires i.e. December 4, 2015.
The JUI-F was offered to join the new set up but it not only refused but its provincial leader Maulana Abdul Waseh was punished for having talked about the coalition.
According to Jan Muhammad Jamali, a PML-N dissident and former speaker of Balochistan Assembly, the real administration of the province is being executed and run by the corps commander Southern Command along with FC and the role of the civilian government is only in the name.
Talking to the News, he said he had some well-wishers in the assembly and they all are waiting for the change of government with curiosity as a number of aspirants have emerged in the

party to be the new chief minister.
He said that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto had signed Charter of Democracy in London which worked between the two parties so far and the Murree accord also needs to be implemented to maintain political harmony in the province. About the aspirants of the CM slot, Jamali said Sardar Sanaullah Zehri claims he was promised by the PM to be next chief minister, whereas the incumbent Irrigation Minister Changez Marri and Saleh Bhotani were also in the running. A JUI-F source on condition of anonymity said the party may agree to vote for the new set up but without joining the cabinet.