President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani in a meeting.—File photo

ISLAMABAD: Maula Bakhsh Chandio, a Pakistan People’s Party Senator from Sindh, will take over as new federal law minister on Saturday.

He will replace Babar Awan, who resigned earlier this week to plead a presidential reference seeking the Supreme Court’s opinion about the execution of former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.

Presidential spokesman Farhatullah Babar said the decision had been taken during a meeting between President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani after the former’s return from Turkey.

“On the advice of the prime minister, the president approved the appointment of Maula Bakhsh Chandio as federal Law Minister and that of Advocate Farooq Awan as Adviser on Law. Senator Chandio will take oath as federal minister on Saturday,” the spokesman said.

The Supreme Court has already asked the government to appoint a new law minister so that he could attend a meeting of the Judicial Commission of Pakistan scheduled for Saturday.

The spokesman said that the political situation and the visit of the prime minister to Afghanistan also came under discussion. The prime minister informed the president about his telephonic conversation with UK Prime Minister David Cameron.

Mr Zardari accepted Mr Gilani’s invitation to perform ground-breaking of the Diamer-Bhasha dam project.

Mr Zardari apprised Mr Gilani of his recent visit to Turkey. They expressed satisfaction on the pre-feasibility study of Gul Train.

Earlier, former law minister Babar Awan called on President Zardari at the Presidency. Mr Awan briefed the president on the progress on the reference filed under Article 186 of the Constitution.

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