Pakistan's Caretaker Prime Minister-Nominated Anwaarul Haq Kakar on Sunday stated that he would give up both his party post and his Senate seat ahead of his oath-taking on Monday.
Kakar's name had been recommended by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Raja Riaz Ahmad as the caretaker prime minister at the end of the government's tenure. The move was subsequently swiftly approved by President Arif Alvi.
Kakar had been elected to the Senate in 2018 and will see his term expire in March 2024.
In a tweet on Sunday evening, he said that he was giving up his political positions.
"Owing to the fundamental responsibility conferred upon me as the caretaker Prime Minister, I have decided to surrender my membership of the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) and relinquish my Senate position," he said.
Owing to the fundamental responsibility conferred upon me as the caretaker Prime Minister, I have decided to surrender my membership of the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) and relinquish my Senate position. Prayers requested from everyone.— Anwaar ul Haq Kakar (@anwaar_kakar) August 13, 2023
Following his oath-taking on Monday, August 14, Kakar will become the eighth caretaker prime minister in Pakistan's history. Kakar will also become the youngest caretaker prime minister in Pakistan's history. His appointment will bring back the tradition of appointing politicians as caretaker prime ministers after two successive caretaker prime ministers were retired judges.
He is also expected to break all past records of duration spent as caretaker prime minister, with his tenure likely going past the 90-day tenure, background discussions with senior politicians revealed.
Past caretaker prime ministers and their tenures
> Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi - Politician
Tenure: August 6, 1990, to November 6, 1990
> Balkh Sher Mazari - Politician
Tenure: April 18, 1993, to May 26, 1993
> Moeenuddin Ahmad Qureshi - Banker
Tenure: July 18, 1993, to October 19, 1993
> Meraj Khalid - Politician
Tenure: November 5, 1996, to February 17, 1997
> Muhammad Mian Soomro - Politician
Tenure: November 16, 2007, to March 25, 2008
> Mir Hazar Khan Khoso - Retired Judge
Tenure: March 25, 2013, to August 18, 2013
> Nasirul Mulk - Retired Chief Justice of Pakistan
Tenure: June 1, 2018 to August 18, 2018
Consensus on the BAP senator was evolved after Shehbaz and Ahmed failed to gain the other's favour over their preferred names.
Shehbaz has been pushing the names of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader and former federal finance minister Senator Ishaq Dar for the caretaker prime minister slot. Failing which, former prime minister and disgruntled PML-N leader Shahid Khaqan Abbasi is the preferred option.
Ahmad, who was all but abandoned by his party, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), for adopting a dissident view of the party's parliamentary policy to resign en-masse, was said to be pushing for the appointment of Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani as the caretaker prime minister.
Speaking to the media outside the PM House after the meeting between Shehbaz and Ahmad, the two stated that they had mutually decided that the caretaker prime minister would be someone from a smaller province.
“We have finally reached a consensus that Anwaarul Haq Kakar will be the caretaker PM,” Ahmad said.
“We had earlier decided that the caretaker PM should be someone from a smaller province and a non-controversial personality. Our aim was to remove the sense of deprivation in small provinces," he added.