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Omar Ayub nominated as Opposition Leader, Barrister Gohar to be PAC Chairman

ISLAMABAD: On Monday, the PTI-backed Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) outlined its parliamentary strategy and finalized appointments for various parliamentary positions.

Sources indicated that the opposition SIC has nominated individuals for key roles including Leader of the Opposition, parliamentary party leader, and Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee.

According to sources, Omar Ayub has been designated as the Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly.

Former speaker Asad Qaisar has been selected as the parliamentary party leader for the Sunni Ittehad Council in the National Assembly, while Barrister Gohar Ali Khan is set to assume the role of Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee.

It’s noteworthy that following parliamentary tradition, the opposition typically holds the office of the Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC).

Sources added that the SIC will formally inform the Speaker of the National Assembly about their party’s decisions regarding these appointments.

Meanwhile, Barrister Gohar Ali Khan has been reaffirmed as the chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) following recent intra-party polls, as revealed by the party’s spokesperson and Chief Election Commissioner Raoof Hasan on Sunday.

During a press conference, Hasan announced that Gohar won the chairman’s election uncontested, marking the third round of intra-party elections within two years.

The most recent elections, held on Dec 2, saw the PTI’s ‘bat’ symbol revoked by the Supreme Court due to conflicting decisions by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and Peshawar High Court (PHC). Gohar was initially elected as PTI chairman during the Dec 2 elections.

Earlier, the PTI conducted elections in June 2022, which were nullified by the ECP on Nov 23, citing them as “highly objectionable.”

Incarcerated PTI leader Imran Khan initially nominated Barrister Ali Zafar for the chairman position in the scheduled March 3 intra-party polls.

However, Zafar declined, leading Imran to re-nominate Barrister Gohar. During the press conference, Hasan declared Gohar the uncontested winner, as there were no other candidates.

Initially, four applications were submitted for the position, with Ashraf Jabbar, Omar Ayub, Naveed Anjum Khan, and Barrister Gohar. Three applications were accepted, while Naveed’s was rejected due to contesting the Feb 8 general elections against a PTI-supported candidate, leading to the cancellation of his party membership on Feb 11. Another reason for rejection was Naveed’s failure to fulfill the six-month uninterrupted party membership requirement.

Jabbar and Ayub withdrew their applications, paving the way for Gohar’s uncontested victory. Omar Ayub was also elected as PTI’s secretary general without opposition.

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I am an experienced writer, analyst, and author. My exposure in English journalism spans more than 28 years. In the past, I have been working with daily The Muslim (Lahore Bureau), daily Business Recorder (Lahore/Islamabad Bureaus), Daily Times, Islamabad, daily The Nation (Lahore and Karachi). With daily The Nation, I have served as Resident Editor, Karachi. Since 2009, I have been working as a Freelance Writer/Editor for American organizations.

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