Jam Kamal Khan steps down as Balochistan CM

Published October 24, 2021
Balochistan CM Jam Kamal Khan faced pressure from within and outside his party to resign. — Radio Pakistan/File
Balochistan CM Jam Kamal Khan faced pressure from within and outside his party to resign. — Radio Pakistan/File

Jam Kamal Khan has stepped down as the Balochistan chief minister, it was confirmed on Sunday evening.

"Jam Kamal Khan has submitted his resignation to the Governor of Balochistan Syed Zahoor Ahmad Agha," a statement issued by the governor's spokesperson, Paind Khan Kharoti, said.

The resignation was accepted by Governor Agha, it added.

Subsequently, Balochistan Chief Secretary Mathar Niaz Rana issued a notification, saying the resignation had been accepted and the cabinet stood dissolved.

In a tweet earlier, Khan said he had given his "utmost time and energy" for Balochistan's governance and development despite "many deliberate political hindrances".

"I would rather leave respectfully and not be part of their monetary agenda and bad governance formulation," he said, apparently referring to the disgruntled group comprising members of his own Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) and allies that had been demanding his resignation.

Months-long political crisis

The chief minister's resignation comes on the back of a months-long saga, whose early manifestations were witnessed in June this year, when opposition members had camped outside the provincial assembly's building for days in protest against the government led by Alyani for its refusal to allocate development funds for their constituencies in the budget.

The protest had led to mayhem and police had later booked 17 opposition lawmakers in connection with the incident.

Following that, 16 members of the opposition had filed a no-trust motion against the chief minister. However, the Governor House Secretariat had returned the motion to the Balochistan Assembly on technical grounds.

Earlier this month, a no-confidence motion, signed by 14 lawmakers, had been submitted to the secretariat of the Balochistan Assembly, as Alyani continued to face criticism from the disgruntled members of his party over what they termed his failure to consult them in running the affairs of the province.

The chief minister had also stepped down as the BAP president. However, he later withdrew his resignation.

The 'missing' MPAs

On Friday, opposition members had claimed that three female and one male MPAs had gone missing because they had signed the no-confidence motion against Jam Kamal.

The four MPAs had gone missing on the day when the angry group with the support of the opposition parties tabled the no-confidence motion in the Balochistan Assembly on Oct 20.

They later surfaced in Islamabad, claiming there had no foul play. The MPAs, Akbar Askani, Bushra Rind, Laila Tareen and Mahjabeen Sheran, returned to Quetta in the official plane of the Balochistan government.

With the return of four ‘missing’ MPAs and their announcement of support for angry lawmakers of the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP), success of the no-trust motion against Khan could not be ruled out as Nawab Sanaullah Zehri also joined hands with the disgruntled group.

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