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Government ‘accepts all demands’ to woo PPP

The PML-N-led government has reportedly acceded to all demands from its key ally, the PPP, according to sources familiar with the matter. This development follows the third round of negotiations between the PML-N and PPP committees, prompted by the PPP’s dissatisfaction over not being consulted about the federal budget.

Sources indicate that the PML-N has agreed to several of the PPP’s requests, including preferential treatment in Punjab for development funds and administrative appointments. Key PPP figures such as Raja Pervez Ashraf, Ali Haider Gillani, Nadeem Afzal Chan, and Hassan Murtaza participated in the discussions, while the PML-N was represented by figures including Punjab Assembly Speaker Ahmed Khan, Rana Sanaullah, and Khawaja Saad Rafique.

Among the agreements reached are the PPP’s involvement in selecting district administrators, law officers, and representation in various boards and authorities. The PPP has also secured assurances regarding the timely conduct of local elections and equal distribution of development funds to their lawmakers.

Specifically, the PPP demanded the appointment of an additional secretary in the chief minister’s secretariat exclusively tasked with addressing the party’s issues. Furthermore, the PPP will be consulted on appointments of district deputy commissioners, police officers, and revenue officers in districts where they hold substantial political influence, such as Multan, Muzaffargarh, Rahim Yar Khan, Rawalpindi, and Rajanpur.

Conversely, the PPP has offered to accommodate the PML-N’s preferences for district officers in Sindh, despite the PML-N not having significant representation there.

Following these talks, both parties will report back to their respective leaders—PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. If agreements are finalized, they will be documented in a formal agreement and subsequently implemented.

The discussions come amid tensions over the budget and governance issues, with both parties attempting to address mutual concerns and reinforce their coalition partnership.

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