According to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan, President Arif Alvi will speak with him before appointing a new Chief of Army Staff (COAS).
The shocking statement was made by the former prime minister in an interview with ARY News. Asserting that he was in touch with PTI member President Alvi, Imran Khan said, “I am in contact with the President about the summary relating to a significant appointment,” adding that Alvi would consult him since he was the party chairman.
I don’t mind who becomes army chief, but I want the choice to be based on qualifications, he insisted.
When asked whether the President would delay the appointment of the new Army Chief, the PTI head said, “President Alvi and we have decided to play within constitutional boundaries.”
He claimed that the individuals in charge of choosing the candidate for this important army position are corrupt, and he expressed his concerns about their selection.
When senior journalist Hamid Mir questioned Defense Minister Khawaja Asif on November 21 during the Geo News programme “Capital Talk” about why Imran Khan chose November 26 as the date for his long march, the minister responded that Khan may be considering the possibility that the President would reject PM Shehbaz’s recommendation for the COAS.
The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) earlier in the day acknowledged that it had finally received the summary from the Ministry of Defence with a list of names of candidates for the new COAS and the chairman joint chief of staff committee (CJCSC).
After serving as COAS for the past six years, General Bajwa will step down on November 29. Nawaz Sharif, the then-prime minister, appointed him in 2016, and former prime minister Imran Khan later gave him a three-year extension in 2019.