PESHAWAR, May 10: Senator Asfandyar Wali Khan was re-elected president of the Awami National Party for four years in its general council meeting at the Bacha Khan Markaz on Saturday.

Ajmal Khattak, who had recently rejoined the ANP, was elected patron-in-chief of the party.

Ihsan Wyne was elected general secretary and Haji Ghulam Ahmed Bilour, senior vice-president.

The office-bearers were elected unopposed in the presence of over 600 members of the party’s central executive council.

Former senator Dr Mohammed Rehan proposed the candidature of Ihsan Wyne for the party’s presidentship and argued that it would be a good omen for the party and democracy to elect a chief from  Punjab.

This led to a furore as the participants began raising slogans in favour of Asfandyar Wali. Asfandyar Khan and his mother Nasim Wali Khan silenced the councillors saying that it was the democratic right of every member to propose and contest party election. Mr Wyne, however, withdrew his name in favour of Asfandyar Khan.

Haji Mohammad Adeel was elected ANP vice-president from the NWFP, Abdul Zahir Khan from Balochistan, Sultan Khan Mandokhel from Sindh and Neelam Shah from Punjab.

Former senator Qazi Mohammad Anwar was elected additional secretary-general; Sheikh Mohammad Yar Khan, deputy secretary-general; Fazal Rahim, finance secretary; Zahid Khan, information secretary; Wajid Ali Khan, foreign affairs secretary; Naseem Wali, students affairs secretary; and Rana Gul Afridi, labour secretary.

The joint secretaries elected are: Haji Mohammad Khan Masood from Punjab, Mohammad Amin Khattak from Sindh, Sardar Haji Jillani Khan from Balochistan and Khan Nawab from the NWFP.

The election commission was presided over by Haji Mohammed Adeel.

Mr Khattak proposed the name of Asfandyar Khan for presidentship while Naseem Wali proposed the name of Mr Bilour for the post of senior vice-president.

Asfandyar Khan thanked Mr Khattak for rejoining the ANP and expressed that hope that under his guidance the ANP would regain its lost popularity.

The Swabi district, regarded as a stronghold of the ANP, did not get any slot in the central cabinet of the party.

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