Hamza gets ‘bargaining chip’ for PAC top slot

Updated April 23, 2019

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The PML-N’s standing committees chairpersons and members in Punjab Assembly on Monday handed over their resignations to their parliamentary leader Hamza Shahbaz on the issue of not making him the Public Accounts Committee chairman. — DawnNewsTV/File
The PML-N’s standing committees chairpersons and members in Punjab Assembly on Monday handed over their resignations to their parliamentary leader Hamza Shahbaz on the issue of not making him the Public Accounts Committee chairman. — DawnNewsTV/File

LAHORE: The PML-N’s standing committees chairpersons and members in Punjab Assembly on Monday handed over their resignations to their parliamentary leader Hamza Shahbaz on the issue of not making him the Public Accounts Committee chairman.

“The party’s standing committees chairpersons and members have handed over their resignations to opposition leader in Punjab Assembly Hamza Shahbaz. The government is reluctant to appoint the opposition leader chairman PAC. Perhaps it does not know the significance of the PAC,” PML-N Punjab spokesman MPA Malik Muhammad Ahmed told reporters after a meeting of the party’s parliamentary committee here on Monday which was presided over by Mr Hamza.

He said the PML-N had rejected the proposed bill on the local government (tabled in PA on Monday). The government did not have the majority to get this bill passed. “The government should not go for any change without letting the local bodies to complete their tenure,” Ahmed said and added the party would also move the court in this regard.

Meanwhile, the PPP also supported Hamza to be a joint candidate for the PAC after the latter met PPP parliamentary leader Hasan Murtaza in the assembly.

Besides PPP support, chairpersons of standing committees and ‘N’ MPAs hand over resignations to him

“The opposition’s chairpersons of standing committees will resign if the opposition leader is not PAC chairman,” Murtaza said.

Hamza thanked him for supporting the PML-N on this issue.

In case Hamza is made PAC chairman he can stay out of NAB prison (if arrested) like his father (opposition leader in National Assembly) Shahbaz Sharif, by holding (PAC) meetings otherwise Hamza will be at the mercy of Speaker Pervaiz Elahi’s production order.

Talking to reporters outside the assembly, Hamza said he was not fond of becoming PAC chairman but it was a legal matter.

“What an immature leader did with this country is before everyone. The country’s economy is suffering because of uncertain situation,” he said.

When asked about rumours that Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan might be considered for a big role in Punjab, Hamza said: “No comments”.

Published in Dawn, April 23rd, 2019