The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) on Friday announced Senator Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar and MNA-elect Asad Qaiser as the party's nominees for the positions of Punjab governor and National Assembly speaker respectively.
PTI Vice President Shah Mahmood Qureshi made the announcement at a press conference after a party meeting.
Sarwar has held the post of Punjab governor in the past, whereas Qaiser was previously elected Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly speaker.
Hailing from Swabi District of the KP, Qaiser was an educationist prior to entering politics. He started his political career with the Jamaat-i-Islami but teamed up with Khan when he launched his new political party in 1996.
Qaiser worked his way up the party ranks and was made the provincial president in 2008. He became a member of the KP assembly for the first time in 2013.
Back then, he was reportedly also in the running for the KP chief minister's job, but the role was eventually landed by Pervez Khattak.
Qaiser was then elected the provincial assembly's speaker — a position he held for the entirety of the previous PTI government in KP.
Sarwar: from Glasgow MP to governor Punjab
Senator Chaudhry Sarwar is a former member of the British parliament, who swapped his overseas political career to do the same in the country of his birth.
Although born and raised in Pakistan, Sarwar moved to Scotland in the 70s and, after a successful business career, joined local politics there.
In 1997, he was elected as MP for Glasgow Govan — a feat he would repeat in future.
In 2013, however, Sarwar left British politics to serve the old country, and joined the PML-N. The same year, following his party's electoral victory, he was made the Governor Punjab.
As the governor, Sarwar clashed with his own party's government and eventually left it to join the PTI.
Party coordination with MNAs
Shah Mahmood Qureshi today also announced that on the night of August 13, after the newly elected assembly takes oath, Imran Khan will chair a meeting of all PTI and coalition party MNAs to discuss their combined future strategy.
PTI has also nominated party representatives that will keep tabs on and coordinate with MNAs from regions designated to them.
"Pervez Khattak will look after the KP and Fata region, Arif Alvi will take care of Sindh. Shafqat Mehmood will coordinate with MNAs from central Punjab, Chaudhry Sarwar will coordinate with members from west Punjab, while Amir Kiyani will coordinate with north Punjab and I will take care of the coordination with members from south Punjab," Qureshi announced during the press conference.
Answering a question about whether he thought that the NA session was called on August 13 to prevent Khan from taking oath as prime minister on August 14, Qureshi said: "No, we don't think any such thing happened. We understand that there are legal processes that had to be completed and there were some requirements from the Election Commission of Pakistan that had to be fulfilled before the session could be called."
He added, "I hope that this whole process will move forward within the legal framework and the president will fulfil his role in the best possible manner."