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Waqas Akram succeeds Sher Afzal Marwat as the head of the Public Accounts Committee

The chairmanship of the National Assembly’s Public Accounts Committee has sparked a conflict among senior PTI members.

Reports reveal that the party’s political committee has opted to replace Sher Afzal Khan Marwat with Sheikh Waqas Akram, leading to a contentious situation within the party ranks.

According to a party insider, the PTI’s political committee convened in Islamabad on Friday evening under its chairman’s leadership to deliberate on the nomination. The majority of the committee members voted in favor of replacing Mr. Marwat with the MNA from Jhang, Sheikh Waqas Akram.

In the voting, nine out of the 19-member committee, headed by Omar Ayub, supported Sheikh Waqas, while seven backed Mr. Marwat. Aon Abbas, although present, chose to abstain. Notably, former speaker Asad Qaiser and Mr. Marwat were absent from the meeting.

Reacting to the decision, Sher Afzal Marwat expressed bitterness and anger, labeling it as a conspiracy against him by the PTI establishment when reached for comment over the phone. The decision of the PTI’s political committee has triggered a power struggle among party leaders.

He specifically singled out Mr. Ayub and Shibli Faraz, alleging their involvement in what he described as ongoing conspiracies against him. “It’s because I am popular,” he asserted.

The party’s principal spokesperson, Raoof Hasan, declined to comment on the matter, stating that their founding chairman routinely referred issues to the committee for discussion and consultation. He emphasized that any recommendations made by the committee were then referred back to the incarcerated leader, who ultimately made the decision.

“We are obligated not to discuss matters until Khan Sahib decides with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’,” the party’s central secretary of information stated over the phone. “Anything else before that would be speculation,” he added, refraining from confirming or denying the developments.

The MNA from Lakki Marwat, who rose dramatically to prominence following the imprisonment of party leader Imran Khan in various cases, has consistently made headlines. From leading the party when many leaders were in hiding to his witty remarks and outspoken comments, he has often found himself at odds with his party colleagues and others.

PTI’s current chairman, Barrister Gohar Ali Khan, had announced on April 20 the nomination of Mr. Marwat as chairman of the prestigious PAC, traditionally awarded to the opposition benches. “I met with PTI’s founder today. He directed to nominate Sher Afzal Marwat for the office of the chairman PAC,” Barrister Gohar stated to the media after meeting his party leader at Adiala Jail.

Mr. Marwat expressed bewilderment over what prompted the political committee to overturn the decision made by the jailed party leader. “This is a $50 million question,” he remarked. “Who conveyed the instructions from Khan Sahab and persuaded the political committee to replace my name with that of Shaikh Waqas?”

Mr. Marwat, a member of the political committee, expressed his surprise at not being informed about the decision to replace him. He suggested a coordinated effort against him by what he termed the “PTI establishment.”

He highlighted his brother’s abrupt removal from the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa cabinet and his own dismissal as part of a conspiracy. He criticized Chief Minister Ali Amin Gandapur for not delaying the decision to dismiss his brother until he had a chance to discuss it with Imran Khan.

Mr. Marwat felt disrespected and humiliated by these actions, stating they demeaned his family and tribe. He expressed his intention to confront Khan on the matter and seek a resolution, indicating his frustration with internal conflicts and conspiracies and his plans to reassess his political future following the meeting.

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