ISLAMABAD: Opposition-backed Sadiq Sanjrani on Monday bagged a lion’s share of votes to be elected Senate chairman while Saleem Mandviwalla became deputy chairman of the House.
Sanjrani secured 57 votes while Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) candidate Raja Zafarul Haq received 46 votes. Similarly, Mandviwalla secured 54 votes against Usman Kakar’s 44.
Both the chairman and the deputy chairman have been sworn in of their new responsibilities.
Sadiq Sanjrani from Chaghi in Balochistan was nominated by Chief Minister Abdul Quddus Bijenzo for the Senate top slot. His candidature was backed by the PPP and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).
Born on April 14, 1978 in Balochistan’s Nok Kundi town, Sanjrani obtained his early education from Chaghi and later received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Balochistan.
Throughout his career, Sanjrani has served many positions including coordinator complaint cell of Prime Minister’s secretariat and member of observatory commission of prime minister in 2009 and was appointed as chief coordinator of PM complaint cell and adviser in 2009. The PPP, PTI and the Balochistan CM reached a consensus on this account after
rounds of talks. Born on January 25, 1959, Mandiwalla graduated from Fort Worth School of Aviation in 1981. He has served as president of the Board of Investment and minister of state for investment. He held the portfolio from October 2008 till May 2013.
Prior to his appointment as minister, he was the president of the Lasbela Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He was appointed finance minister on February 19, 2013.
Mandviwalla was unanimously elected Senate Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue, Economic Affairs, Statistics and Privatization chairman.
The PTI did not objected to his candidature after being wooed by the PPP.
Agencies add: Earlier in the day, newly-elected members of the upper house of parliament reached the upper house of the parliament to take oath as senators.
Presiding officer and PML-N leader Sardar Muhammad Yaqoob Khan Nasir administered oath of 52 senators including Dr Asad Ashraf of PML-N, who replaced Nehal Hashmi. The only newly-elected senator missing from the ceremony was former finance minister Ishaq Dar.
The Senate comprises 66 general seats, 17 women, 17 technocrat and four minorities seats. Of these 104 seats, each province has 23 seats, including 14 general seats, four women seats, four technocrat seats and a non-Muslim seat.
The Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) has all eight general seats in the Senate while Islamabad has four seats, including two general seats, a women seat and a technocrat seat.
Later, the polling was held to elect Deputy Chairman of the Senate and Saleem Mandviwala emerged victorious with 54 votes against 44 bagged by Mohammad Usman Khan Kakar. Five senators did not cast their votes.
The Presiding Officer Sardar Muhammad Yaqoob made the announcement following which supporters of winning candidate thumped the desk.
The Pakistan People’s Party and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf supported Sadiq Sanjrani and Saleem Mandviwala.
Sardar Muhammad Yaqoob Nasir administrated the oath to the new elected Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani.
The election for the deputy chairman handed the opposition its second victory for the day, with PPP Senator Saleem Mandviwalla elected to the seat with 54 votes against the PML-N backed Usman Khan Kakar of the Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party, who secured 44 votes. The MQM’s five senators abstained from the deputy chairman’s election.
Newly elected Chairman of Senate Saleem Mandviwala took oath administered by Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani.
Saleem Mandviwala was nominated by the PPP-PTI coalition along with independent Senators from Balochistan. Soon after the results were announced by the presiding officer, the House erupted into pro-Zardari, pro-PPP slogans.
Pakistan Peoples’ Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari was the first one to congratulate Sanjrani. “Zia’s opening batsman defeated. Balochistan wins. Federalism wins. Congratulations Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani,” he tweeted.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan stated: “This [election of Sadiq Sanjrani] will strengthen the federation. We are happy for the people of Balochistan & for the federation of Pakistan”.
Sanjrani, then took oath from Sardar Yaqoob and assumed his office. Afterwards, newly elected chairman announced to start the process for election of deputy chairman.
Senator Sadiq Sanjrani had been backed by the joint opposition, including the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P), Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and independents from Balochistan and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata).
On the other hand, PML-N veteran Raja Zafarul Haq had been nominated by the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and supported by its coalition partners.
Hailing from the Khan Bahadur family of Sanjrani tribe in Chaghi, he was elected as a senator on an independent ticket on March 3. He was later backed by the leading opposition groups, including PPP, PTI, MQM-P and independents from Balochistan, and FATA for the slot of Senate’s chairman.
The Senate chairman served on high profile government positions including Coordinator of Grievances Cell at Prime Minister’s Secretariat in 1999 and was also a member of the Prime Minister Inspection Commission.
He went on to serve as Chief Coordinator/Advisor, Prime Minister’s Grievances Wing, Prime Minister’s Secretariat in 2009.
Sanjrani has been also working as Sanjrani Mining Company’s Chief Executive and serving as Director/Chairman H.R Committee in the National Industrial Parks Development & Management Company and The Hub Power Company (HUBCO)
In addition, he worked as Director on several Sui Southern Gas Company boards along with Export Processing Zone Authority (EPZA) and Pakistan Baitul Mal.
His cousin Sardar Atif Sanjrani had been a member of National Assembly from 1997 to 1999.
Born on April 14, 1978, Sanjrani got basic schooling in his native town Nokundi. He went to Islamabad for further education and obtained a master’s degree.
PTI, PPP and Balochistan panel, the three groups have joined the ranks of each other to bar PMLN. In the latest development, Bilawal Bhutto (chairman of PPP) has announced to support Sadiq Sanjrani for Senate chairmanship. He is also backed by PTI and Balochistan panel. If these three parties gain support from FATA members, they would be also be in the position to make sure appointment of their candidates on the aforementioned posts.
As per constitutional provisions, half of the senators retire every three years. Freshly elected Senate chairman Sadiq Sanjrani administers oath to Saleem Mandviwalla in Senate today.
Announcement of the winning candidate was made over an hour after the upper house elected Sadiq Sanjrani, backed by the joint opposition as the chairman of the Senate.
Mandviwalla was sworn-in minutes after Sanjrani laid out details of the polls and votes secured by each candidate. Mandviwalla was elected senator in March 2015 on ticket issued by PPP. He served as the president of the Board of Investment.
He also served as state minister for investment from late 2008 to early 2013. He was the president of Lasbela Chamber and Commerce Industry in Lasbela district of Balochistan.
Mandviwalla served as the finance minister of Pakistan for a brief period of less than four months in 2013. The lawmaker was born in Karachi in 1959 on January 25 and comes from a well-known family of businessmen.