New CM of Punjab vows to end status quo & corruption

LAHORE: Newly elected Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar on Sunday vowed to resolve the issues faced by the province as per the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan.
Speaking in the provincial assembly after being elected as leader of the house, he said he will bring the best team and focus all energies on the service of the public.
“We have to bring improvements to institutions and do away with status quo,” he told the house, adding that his only merit to be appointed to the coveted post is his hailing from an underprivileged area of the province.
He announced to fix and bring the Punjab police at par with that of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. He said his top priority would be good governance and taming corruption.
Buzdar thanked the opposition for taking part in the democratic process.
Earlier, Speaker Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi presided over the Punjab Assembly session during which the election for leader of the house took place.
The election was held by the method of division of the house. Mr Buzdar received 186 votes while his rival, PML-N leader Hamza Shehbaz, bagged 159 votes.
Prime Minister Imran Ahmed Khan Niazi Sunday congratulated Sardar Usman Ahmed Khan Buzdar on his election as the Chief Minister of Punjab. The prime minister also felicitated the parliamentary party of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and allies, said a PM Office statement.
The election of Sardar Usman Buzdar has heralded the onset of a new era in Punjab, the prime minister remarked.
The session being chaired by Speaker Pervaiz Elahi began with the recitation of Holy Quran following an hour delay. The speaker directed members to return to the House after registering their votes.
As the Speaker announced the results, the house plunged into chaos as members from the opposition benches staged a protest, gathering in front of the speaker’s dias and chanting slogans.
PTI MPAs, however, thumped desks and congratulated Buzdar on being elected as chief executive of the province.
Instead of secret balloting, the 371 members of the assembly will divide into two groups. The group that forms a simple majority with 186 or more MPAs will be able to install its chief minister. A re-election will be held if a simple majority cannot be achieved.
Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) had decided to stay away from the election of Punjab Chief Minister. The party neither voted for PTI candidate nor for PML-N candidate.
Ruckus broke out as the opposition members staged protest in front of speaker’s dais soon after the announcement of new CM. They also chanted slogans in the favor of PML-N.
Speaking during the session, Buzdar thanked the members of the house and said there are a lot of challenges in the province, but God willing he will take Imran Khan’s vision forward. He said there is poverty throughout Punjab and he hopes to develop the province. We will sustain the development in the developed areas and begin development in underprivileged areas, said Buzdar.
He included good governance, ending corruption, strengthening the police, strengthening the local government system and improving institutions as his main concerns. We all need to work together to improve Punjab, he said. Buzdar thanked the opposition for taking part in this democratic process and said he would definitely take their suggestions into consideration. He ended his speech by thanking Prime Minister Imran Khan for nominating him.
The PTI’s Ammar Yasir presented a resolution in the Punjab Assembly against caricatures of the Holy Prophet (PBUH).
Hamza Shehbaz recalled how people sacrificed for the country at the time of Partition. “People were killed in trains and deprived of their honour,” he said during his address. “Yet after 71 years, all the parties are crying foul about rigging in the elections. The people of Pakistan want answers.”
He said ballot papers were found lying strewn on the roads and under classroom desks. “You would remember how terrorism affected this country,” he said. “Recently, ANP’s Haroon Bilour sahib was martyred. Pakistan has rendered numerous such sacrifices. Today, we are facing multiple challenges. Nawaz Sharif wanted to end load-shedding. Today, our enemy country says it will kill Pakistan of thirst. Kalabagh Dam became victim of politics. We could have had a bigger reservoir. Even today, if a consensus can be reached, the Kalabagh Dam should be built. Bhasha Dam was a dream. This assembly should be proud that we have acquired the land for the dam after spending Rs100 million. Pakistan will progress.”
There have been many vuzra-e-aala [chief ministers] but there will never be another khadim-e-aala [chief servant], he said of his father.
Nawaz Sharif was offered in 2013 that he could form the government in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, he said. “But he did not take the offer as the PTI had formed the majority,” he said. “We will not rest until rigging is taken care of, said Hamza Shehbaz. “Despite all hurdles, the PML-N emerged as the largest party in Punjab,” he said.
The PML-N’s Hamza was elected on the PP-146 seat with 71,389 votes. He is the son of PML-N President and former Punjab CM Shehbaz Sharif. The PML-N has emerged successful on 129 seats of the Punjab Assembly. With the backing of one independent candidate, 30 women seats and four minority seats, they enjoy the support of 164 MPAs.
The PTI’s candidate, Buzdar, was elected on Dera Ghazi Khan’s PP-286 seat with 27,027 votes. He is the son of tribal chieftain Sardar Fatah Muhammad Khan Buzdar. The PTI has secured victory on 119 seats of the Punjab Assembly. As many as 29 independent MPAs joined the PTI. With the backing of 33 women seats and four minority seats, the PTI has the support of 179 MPAs.
Meanwhile, Pakistan Muslim league-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Hamza Shahbaz on Sunday has demanded to constitute parliamentary commission to probe into alleged rigging in elections 2018. Talking to media outside Punjab Assembly, Hamza said that he took oath as member of provincial assembly for the continuity of democracy. He said PML-N is taking part in today’s election with a heavy heart because it has not been given an opportunity to form government despite being the largest party in the House.
PML-N leader also lashed out at Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), saying that a disqualified person took independent candidates to Bani Gala for their meeting with Imran Khan.
It is to be mentioned here that PTI’s Usman Buzdar and PML-N’s Hamza Shahbaz are contesting for the post of Punjab CM. – NNI

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