LAHORE: The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government is set to hold talks with the Pakistan Muslim League-Q (PML-Q) leadership to resolve longstanding and pending issues with its coalition partner primarily on development funds and administrative powers.
The government’s new three-member committee comprising Punjab Governor Chaudhry Sarwar, Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and federal minister Shafqat Mahmood is set to hold its maiden meeting at senior PML-Q leader Pervaiz Elahi’s residence on Monday.
The committee has also invited PTI senior leader Pervaiz Khattak as well as federal Planning and Development Minister Asad Umer to be part of the meeting.
“Mr Khattak has been invited for being overall chairman of the government committees working on resolving issues and misunderstandings with coalition partners in Punjab and Sindh, while federal P&D minister Asad Umer has been invited to discuss disbursement of development funds at the federal level,” a source told Dawn on Sunday. “The Punjab committee will itself take care of development funds in the province,” the source added.
It was learnt that the PML-Q in Punjab wanted to have its administrative share in the districts, where it had its political base with winning MPAs and MNAs. Since the change of the committee, the PML-Q leadership wanted that several decisions, including due share in the administrative power through bureaucracy, agreed upon with the Tareen committee, be implemented.
The Tareen-led committee had reportedly also agreed to empower the two PML-Q ministers in Punjab and one at Centre and the ally party leadership wanted to implement the earlier agreed upon decisions, which were recorded in minutes too.
After formation of the new committee, Pervaiz Elahi, who was spearheading the talks with the PTI, had expressed his strong resentment over non- implementation of the agreement and given a week’s deadline for implementation on it. Otherwise, the PML-Q leader had also gone hurling threat that it could review its alliance with the government in case the commitment was not honoured.
Last week, new committee member Shafqat Mahmood had made a personal visit and held an informal meeting with Pervaiz Elahi, who is also Punjab Assembly’s speaker, to discuss allies’ reservations and have a feel about the level of resentment in the PML-Q ranks.
Last Thursday, new committee members Governor Sarwar and CM Buzdar made a flying visit to Islamabad and attended a joint meeting of the new committees constituted by the prime minister.
The governor upon return to the city told media persons that the government committee had decided to continue dialogues to remove reservations of the allies and added that the government would fulfil its commitments. “The PML-Q is an ally of the government and stood by it, and there is nothing to be worried about as the government committee after having consultations agrees to continue dialogues with the PML-Q and take it along at all levels besides fulfilling all commitments made to it,” he said.
“The new committee along with Mr Khattak and Mr Umer will meet the PML-Q leadership on Monday (today) with full mandate and resolve all issues,” a source said.