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PPP nominated Syed Murad Ali Shah as CM

26 July, 2016

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KARACHI: The Pakistan Peoples Party has picked Syed Murad Ali Shah as the successor of Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah and a formal announcement in this regard will be made at a meeting to be chaired by PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari on Tuesday (today).

Mr Shah, a senior minister who holds the portfolio of finance in the current provincial cabinet, spent a busy day in Karachi on Monday as he met Sindh Governor Dr Ishratul Ibad as well as members of his party at Chief Minister House.

Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah spoke to a private news channel on Monday and confirmed that Murad Ali Shah “will be the next chief minister of Sindh”.

However, Murad Ali Shah did not confirm it himself. He told the media outside his residence that if nominated, he would try his best to come up to the expectations of the party.

Sources said that the PPP would formally appreciate the services of Qaim Ali Shah in the meeting to be held on Tuesday at Bilawal House before the veteran politician handed in his resignation to the party leadership.

They said that the meeting would also announce and approve the name of Murad Ali Shah as the new CM. As soon as his name was announced, he would informally take over the affairs of the Sindh government and discuss his cabinet with the party leadership, the sources added.

Mr Shah is expected to take the oath of his new office by the end of this week.

He held a meeting with Governor Ibad and discussed with him their future working relationship as well as the summoning of the Sindh Assembly session for the election of the new leader of the house following Qaim Ali Shah’s resignation.

But officially his meeting with the governor was related to issues of development and law and order in the province. The finance minister informed the governor about the situation of release of development funds, which the governor appreciated saying that those schemes should soon be completed for the benefit of the masses.

PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari had on Sunday decided to replace Qaim Ali Shah and bring in a new provincial cabinet after a meeting with party leaders in Dubai.

Maula Bux Chandio, adviser to the Sindh chief minister on information, termed the replacement of the CM a routine matter and “not a conspiracy”.

He told reporters that Mr Bhutto-Zardari had decided to bring “young leadership” for the betterment of the province.

About the issue of Sindh Rangers’ special policing powers for which the Dubai meeting was summoned, a PPP leader said: “The party has decided to extend powers of Rangers, which is literally obscured by the chief minister’s change.”

He said the decision would be announced soon. “Most probably it will be announced in hours or in a day.”

About the removal of Qaim Ali Shah, the sources said that apart from his soft stance on the issue of Rangers’ actions in the province, the factors that caused his departure was fragmentation in the party.

The party leadership got complaints from a group that he did not entertain their requests about various projects and lucrative transfers and postings.

“He [Mr Shah] is a man who goes by the book, which too went against him ultimately when it came to political considerations,” said a senior party man.

CM Shah’s performance in the development sector was also questioned by his detractors. He contended with this allegation throughout his long stint as the chief minister and finally it was counted as one of the reasons that played in the party’s decision to show him the door.

His soft attitude towards Rangers and an independent stance in implementing the National Action Plan is said to be among the factors of his exit.

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