PESHAWAR - As Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf is going to form second consecutive government in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa following a landslide victory in the province, the question deliberated over in the party’s meeting and asked by the masses is that whether former chief minister Pervaiz Khattak will retain his previous slot or not.
Khattak has secured one seat each of KP and National assemblies, however; it is early to say as which one he will vacate. Khattak remained chief minister for five years after 2013 elections and is still among the frontrunners for the post again.
With a long political career and having been at the helm of affairs in KP for the last five years, Khattak has an edge over other contenders. It has also been learnt that Khattak can opt for the slot of a federal minister. However, a formal decision in this regard will be taken later.
Certainly, the PTI will have no issue in forming the provincial government after emerging as the single largest party in the province by securing 68 seats out of the 97 total seats. The total tally will go up after adding women reserved seats with 68 general seats, which the PTI has won in direct elections.
In case Khattak joins the federal cabinet, who will be the next KP chief minister? KP Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser and former KP minister for elementary education Atif Khan are among potential candidates for the job. They both have won their respective KP Assembly seats.
Asad and Atif have been loyal to the party and its top leadership. Both are in good books of PTI chief Imran Khan.
Above all, sources within the PTI said that Khattak is popular as against other aspirants of the slot of KP chief minister. He beats others by having experience of running government and administrative affairs while working with bureaucracy. Moreover, Khattak is a senior politician of the province, and that’s why, he has relatively good relations with rest of political parties in the province. The KP people voted for the PTI for the second consecutive term, pinning high hopes on it.
The PTI’s victory broke the myths associated with the 30-year election results of the province that a party is hardly ever voted to power for the second consecutive term. The PTI had bagged only 35 seats in KP Assembly in the 2013 elections and made an alliance with Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) and Qaumi Watan Party (QWP), however; results of the 2018 general polls show a clear majority for the PTI. Thus, it is in a position to form its government this time without anybody’s support. This time, the clear majority will help the PTI to implement its manifesto in true sense.