Amid stringent security in the provincial capital, the Balochistan assembly on Saturday morning voted to elect PML-Q’s Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo as the new leader of the house in Quetta.
Bizenjo was sworn in as the CM and the oath was administered at governer house by Mehmood Achakzai. His cabinet took oath the same day, which was also administered by the Balochistan governor.
Bizenjo won over 41 votes of the 54 votes cast. The Pakhtunkhwa Mill Awami Party’s (PkMAP) Syed Liaquat Agha received only 13 votes. In a house of 65 members, at least 33 votes are required to elect the CM.
Thousands of policemen were deployed around the assembly hall on Saturday, and surrounding roads were also sealed off for regular traffic.
The National Party, once a key partner in the coalition government, opted not to sit either on the treasury or the opposition benches.
The NP’s MPAs Khalid Langoue, Mujeebur Rehman and Fatah Buladi besides Pakhtunkhwa Mill Awami Party (PkMAP) MPA Manzoor Kakar voted for Bizenjo.
Meanwhile, PkMAP chairman has announced to take action against MPA Manzoor Kakar for casting his vote against the party policy.
Chances were obvious that Bizenjo would become the new chief minister of Balochistan after more Muslim Leaguers announced support for him against the PkMAP nominee.
Besides Agha, another PkMAP lawmaker, Abdul Rahim Ziaratwal, also filed nomination papers for the election of the Leader of the House on Friday but withdrew it today in favour of Liaquat Agha who is also competing for the provincial CM post.
Members of the opposition parties and both PML-N factions, apparently from the treasury benches, also supported Bizenjo for the CM slot.
Who is new Balochistan CM?
Born in 1974, Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo completed his initial education in his native town of Shindi located in remote Awaran tehsil, and secured a master’s degree in English from the University of Balochistan in 2000.
Retracing the steps of his father, who was thrice elected from Awaran, Bizenjo commenced his political career from his home town Shindi Jhao Awaran.
Elected as Balochistan Assembly for the first time in 2002 from PB-41 Awaran, Bizenjo was sworn in as provincial minister for livestock and dairy development in Jam Yousuf’s cabinet. In 2008, he was re-elected on PML-Q’s ticket and joined Nawab Aslam Raisani’s cabinet as minister for livestock, successfully completing a five-year tenure.
After contesting general elections in 2013 again on PML-Q’s ticket, Bizenjo was elected MPA for a third time. When he joined he PML-N-led coalition government in the province, Bizenjo was nominated as deputy speaker of the Balochistan Assembly in June 2013.
During the Senate election in 2015, Speaker Jan Muhammad Jamali quit the ruling PML-N and tendered his resignation from his post just before a no-trust motion was tabled against him. He resigned as deputy speaker when CM Nawab Sanaullah Zehri nominated Raheela Durrani as new speaker of the provincial assembly.
On January 2, Bizenjo and 14 like-minded members of Balochistan Assembly submitted a no-confidence motion against Sanaullah Zehri of the PML-N, triggering a political crisis in the province. The crisis was averted on January 9 after Zehri tendered his resignation to Governor Muhammad Khan Achakzai minutes before the no-confidence motion against him.