Ishaq Khakwani, Babar Awan among four candidates being considered for Punjab governor

  • PTI to nominate Imran Ismail as Sindh governor
  • Sabir Hussain likely to be GB governor

LAHORE:  The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), which emerged as the winner in July 25 polls, is reportedly mulling over four names for the post of Punjab governor.

According to a private media outlet, the four candidates being considered for the post are Ishaq Khakwani, Babar Awan, Rai Azizullah and Ejaz Chaudhary.

It was reported that Jehangir Tareen hopes to appoint Ishaq Khakwani to the post, whereas Azizullah is believed to be a close aide of party Chairman Imran Khan.

Ejaz Chaudhary is also a strong contender in the race for Punjab governor owing to his services for the party. Furthermore, Babar Awan has been included in the list of potential candidates for Punjab governor as he can give a tough time to opposition parties.

The PTI claims it has a majority in the Punjab Assembly with 186 seats after the support of independents and allied parties.

The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and PTI have been embroiled in a battle over who will the government in the province.

In Sindh, the PTI has decided to make Imran Ismail as the governor.

The PTI leadership is likely to choose the name of Sabir Hussain, who is Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) deputy information secretary, as new GB governor.

The PTI’s leadership had earlier hinted to replace governors of all provinces, as they were nominated by the former government of PML-N.

The PTI’s sources disclosed that currently, Sabir Hussain’s name was on top amongst the six personalities of GB under consideration for the slot of the governorship. The other names under discussion include former DIG Haji Hashmat Khan, former PTI convener Doctor Muhammad Zaman, Akbar Hussain Akbar, Justice (r) Jaffar Shah and PTI GB senior vice-president Shah Naseer.

Doctor Muhammad Zaman had contested election from PTI ticket in 2015 from Darail and is currently facing an inquiry for his clash with an officer of a spy agency. Likewise, Akbar Hussain Akbar has previously been with PML-Q and recently joined PTI in 2015.

Justice (r) Jaffar Khan had joined the party last year in 2017.

Sabir Hussain, who has a good educational background, has been working as the principal of Army Public School (APS) and held the post of Hamdard University GB Chapter coordinator for 2007-11. It was Hussain who first introduced the PTI in 2009 in his province while contesting the election and remained loyal with the party despite not being awarded a party ticket in 2015 and facing victimisation by governments of PPP and PML-N.

Furthermore, the PTI has decided to demonstrate its parliamentary strength to form government at the centre, for which a meeting of the PTI’s parliamentary party will be held on Monday.

According to PTI spokesperson, after joining by independently elected parliamentarians, the strength of PTI has reached 125 members in the National Assembly.

This tally will reach 177 after including seats of allies, women, and minorities. The party is going to nominate Imran Khan as PTI candidate for the slot of prime minister.