Minutes before the deadline expired on Monday, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and provincial assembly opposition leader Rana Ansar decided to choose former Sindh High Court Chief Justice Maqbool Baqar as the interim chief minister.
However, there was no indication of agreement in Balochistan about the choice of interim chief minister because a vital meeting between the outgoing chief minister, Abdul Quddus Bizenjo, and the head of the opposition was postponed till Monday.
"After three days of consultations between Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and Leader of Opposition in the dissolved provincial assembly, Rana Ansar, the two have agreed on the appointment of retired justice Maqbool Baqar as caretaker chief minister," reads a brief statement released by the Sindh CM House.
The statement said, "The summary for the formal appointment of Justice Baqar has been immediately forwarded to the Sindh governor, Kamran Khan Tessori."
After a protracted debate inside the party and with its supporters, the opposition chose Baqar's name, which was principally recommended by the Treasury. MQM-P acknowledged that an agreement had been reached on the choice.
As Justice Baqar's name remained "undisputed" by all parties, Ansar told reporters outside the CM House that it was a "win-win situation" for the Treasury and the opposition.
"Additionally, as the opposition's leader, we had to gain the trust of our ally before making any decisions. Therefore, the GDA's input was also taken into account, and a conclusion was reached by consensus."
Before the formal announcement from any side, Justice Baqar, who retired from the Supreme Court last year, appeared on a private TV channel to confirm his appointment. "I was first contacted from the Treasury side, and later the opposition also talked to me on this matter," he said in response to a question.