PESHAWAR: ANP senior leaders said on Monday former provincial minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain had been proposed for the position of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governor and ex-chief minister Ameer Haider Khan Hoti as a federal minister.
The decision was taken during ANP leaders meeting with former president Asif Ali Zardari in Islamabad. According to sources close to former president Asif Ali Zardari, the ANP leaders including former KP CM Ameer Haider Khan Hoti, ANP provincial president Aimal Wali Khan, Syed Masoom Shah Bacha, etc, held a detailed meeting with the former president in which Asif Zardari himself informed the ANP leadership about his decisions.
Pleading anonymity, the sources said that Asif Zardari appreciated sacrifices of the ANP and its leadership for the country and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa during critical time.
The former president told the ANP delegation that he himself has proposed Mian Iftikhar Hussain for the slot of KP governor as hehad suffered personal losses in the war against terrorism.
“Mian Iftikhar is the ANP worker and it will send a positive message if a party worker is made governor of a province,” one of the two sources privy to the meeting told The News while quoting Asif Zardari as saying.
Mian Iftikhar has lost his lone son when he was a provincial minister. The outlawed Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) had claimed his killing. Mian Iftikhar used to be very vocal and some people within the party felt they suffered mostly due to his bold statements at that time.
According to sources, Asif Zardari told the ANP leaders that some other people including PMLN provincial president Engineer Amir Muqam were also campaigning for the governor’s position, but he had already spoken to former prime minister Mian Nawaz Sharif and requested him to consider Mian Iftikhar Hussain as KP governor.
Asif Zardari told the ANP leaders that Mian Nawaz Sharif agreed to his proposal and thus Mian Iftikhar Hussain will be the next governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
He is likely to replace Shah Farman, who resigned from his position on Monday, saying he would not offer protocol to new prime minister Shehbaz Sharif and so he decided to resign. Insiders in PTI, however, claimed that he and former National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaisar had learnt that they would soon lose those positions and thought it better to step down.
Similarly, in the same meeting with Asif Zardari, he informed the ANP leaders that he proposed Ameer Haider Khan Hoti for federal minister. According to sources, Haider Hoti has been offered two portfolios to choose whether he wanted to become federal minister for interior or housing.
This correspondent spoke to leaders of the two political parties in Islamabad and they confirmed the meeting but refused to share information.
“I wish I could say something on record but can’t. Intense negotiations are going on,” a senior PPP leader close to Asif Ali Zardari told The News when reached for his comments on these decisions.
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