PML-N, PPP at loggerheads over PCB chief’s post

In December last year, the government dismissed Ramiz Raja and formed a management committee headed by Najam Sethi to take over the affairs of the PCB. 

The committee was given 120 days to restore regional and departmental cricket and the 2014 constitution. It was also given the task of forming a 10-member governing board and appointing a chairman.

Its term was to be completed on April 21. However, things seemed to be simple at first. However, the Ministry of Inter-Provincial Affairs objected to the appointment of the Election Commissioner. Then only a two to four-week summary was sent to the Prime Minister’s House to extend the committee’s tenure. 

Minister Ehsan ur Rehman Mazari belongs to PPP. Interestingly, the committee got a two-month extension, likely ending on June 22. Zaka Ashraf was PCB’s chairman in the previous regime of PPP. He remained the head and was removed from office after the change of government; later, he had a legal battle with Najam Sethi. He is a close friend of Pakistan People’s Party President Asif Ali Zardari. On the other hand, Najam Sethi is close to former Prime Minister and PML-N leader Nawaz Sharif. In the past few days, Najam Sethi met Nawaz Sharif in London and then Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in Pakistan.

According to the sources, neither party is ready to withdraw their candidates. The situation has taken a dramatic turn, and there may be a surprise, Najam Sethi and Zaka Ashraf both seem determined to become the next PCB chairman. In this regard, when contacted by the correspondent of Express News, the Minister for Inter-Provincial Coordination Affairs, Ehsan ur Rahman Mazari, said that we had sent a summary to the Prime Minister a month ago and requested him to pay attention to the name of Zaka Ashraf as the chairman PCB.

There was no response from him the Prime Minister, so a reminder was sent again. He said there are only a few days left before the term of the management committee ends, so the matter should be resolved sooner. They have received instructions from the top leadership of their party that an attempt should be made to make Zaka Ashraf the board’s chairman. He further stated that it was decided in the coalition government that the party under which the ministry was made would also make future appointments. 

“Sports come under the IPC ministry, so the appointment of the PCB head is our authority; we do not intrude in the affairs of the ministries with the PML-N or other parties. We are hoping that one of the two persons nominated by the Prime Minister for the governing board will include Zaka Ashraf. Now the question is, if this would not be done, what would be the reaction of the Pakistan People’s Party? I do not want to talk about assumptions; I can only comment when the time comes,” Mazari said

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