ISLAMABAD - Raja Sikandar Sultan was appointed chief election commissioner yesterday after both the government and the opposition reached consensus on the subject.

Both the sides have also agreed on Nisar Durrani as member ECP from Sindh and Shah Mehmood Jatoi as Balochistan member.

While announcing the final decision here, Federal Minister for Human Rights Shireen Mizari said that it is good that Parliament itself has decided the matter and no other institution was involved in the matter.

She further stated that the names will be sent to the Prime Minister today for finalisation.

The minister maintained that the parliamentary committee had also reached a consensus on the remaining ECP appointments and had agreed on Nisar Durrani and Shah Mohammad Jatoi as members from Sindh and Balochistan respectively.

She said that both the government and the opposition should aim to work in this manner in the future too.

The meeting of the parliamentary committee took place at the speaker’s chamber under the chairmanship of National Assembly Speaker which was chaired by Asad Qaiser.

Meanwhile, PML-N senior leader Rana Sanaullah told the media that Sikandar Sultan Raja had worked with them during the PML-N government in Punjab.

He claimed that the ECP would work with transparency in the next general elections; adding that the newly appointed CEC was an honest and hardworking officer.

The senior leader of PPP and former Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf said that they hoped that all the three newly appointed persons will do justice to their job.

While commenting on the appointments, JUI-F leader Shahida Akhtar said that all the appointments were finalised without any reservations.

It is important to mention here that the final move took place after Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif in response to the PM’s letter sent a new list of the opposition’s suggested names to the government.

In the updated list from the opposition side Jalil Abbas Jilani was replaced by the former attorney general Irfan Qadir and the rest of the list remained the same.

Irfan Qadir was the nominee suggested by PPP, however, within the opposition there was a strong rift on his name as CEC.

On the other hand, PM Imran Khan had proposed three names for the CEC to Shehbaz. The nominees from the government were all retired bureaucrats, namely Jamil Ahmad, Fazal Abbas Maken and Sikandar Sultan Raja.

Raja Sikandar Sultan is also known for his close relations with the senior leadership of PML-N and it was the reason that till the finalization of his name the government side was reluctant to approve his name as CEC.

The sources told The Nation that many federal ministers were constantly whispering the prime minister to have a review over his name as CEC fearing that he was a man of PML-N.

Raja Sikandar Sultan has earlier worked in different official positions including DC Islamabad, DG Excise & Taxation Punjab, provincial, Provincial Secretary Services & General Administration Punjab, and Director General Immigration.

The new CEC is retired as Secretary of Pakistan Railways.