QUETTA: Former Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti on Tuesday said that new chief minister will be selected after mutual consultation, and will not necessarily belong to the Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N).
Addressing media after the resignation of Sanaullah Zehri as chief minister before a no-confidence motion could be moved agaisnt him, Bugti hailed the decision and said Zehri has resigned based on democratic principles.
“This is politics. We have no personal vendettas. Our relation with him (Zehri) is based on respect and trust and will remain,” he said.
He added that it was a good example set by Zehri to have resign based on democratic principles and that an in-house change had come in the provincial assembly.
He further said that the next chief minister of Balochistan will be selected after consultation with allied political parties, and might not necessarily belong to the PML-N.
Regarding his status in the PML-N, Bugti said that he remains a part of the party but if he is forced to leave, then he will consider other options to either join another political party or become independent. However, he said that it is premature and he not made any final decision.
Bugti refused to answer whether Zehri was pressurised to resign after the meeting with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and the premier’s visit to Quetta. He also refuted rumours that the Balochistan assembly will be the first to be dissolved ahead of the general elections.
“Democracy has won today. There has been accountability from within the House. A change from inside will strengthen democracy,” he said. “It is a good day for democracy, after 18th Amendment, that an in-house change came,” he said.
Bugti among leading candidates tipped as next CM
Four candidates have emerged as the leading candidate for the post of chief minister after Zehri’s resignation. Sarfaraz Bugti, whose first gave the news of his resignation, is also among the leading candidates for the coveted post.
Other leading candidates include Saleh Bhootani, Changez Marri and Mir Jan Jamali, all of whom belong to the PML-N.
Saleh Bhootani is the elder brother of the current Speaker of Balochistan Assembly Mohammad Aslam Bhutani. Changez Marri is the chieftain of the Marri tribe and the the son of Balochistan tribal leader Khair Bakhsh khan Marri. He serves as minister for irrigation since 2013.
Mir Jan Mohammad Khan Jamali is former Speaker of Balochistan assembly and former deputy chairman Senate. He won a provincial assembly seat in 2013 election.
A session of the Balochistan assembly has been convened, prior to which an informal consultative session is being held to finalise the candidate. Abdul Qudoos Bizenjo, who moved the no-confidence against Zehri, is also among the consultation and a final decision is expected soon.