Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Political Communication Shahbaz Gill has denied reports claiming that Prime Minister Imran Khan has decided to remove Punjab Chief Minister Uman Buzdar.
Earlier reports from ARY News had indicated that the prime minister had decided to remove Usman Buzdar from his post and would form a committee to decide who the next chief minister of the province would be.
Senior Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) members had reportedly consulted the prime minister yesterday, advising him to dismiss Usman Buzdar. The Punjab CM reportedly tendered his resignation to the PM to appease certain factions within the PTI. PM Imran had at that time rejected his resignation.
The opposition has set its sights on the Punjab CM seat. Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Co-chairman and opposition leader Asif Ali Zardari had nominated Pakistan Muslim League-Q (PML-Q) MPA Chaudhry Parvez Elahi to replace Usman Buzdar in the role.
Meanwhile, Aleem Khan Group and the Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) have also reportedly decided to field a joint candidate to replace the Punjab Chief Minister.
Throughout his tenure as chief minister, Usman Buzdar has received criticism from his opponents, as well as from supporters of the PTI. The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has launched multipled cases against Buzdar, most recently in 2020 for nepotism after he allegedly awarding development contracts from the Lahore Development Authority (LDA) and other provincial government departments to friends. Earlier that year, he was summoned by the NAB for allegedly issuing a liquor licence to a Lahore hotel by abusing his powers as the chief executive of the province.