KARACHI: Former Chief Justice of Pakistan Saeed-uz-Zaman Siddiqui was sworn in as the new Governor of Sindh today, as he replaced the longest-serving governor in Pakistan’s history Dr Ishratul Ebad, on Friday.
The oath taking ceremony was conducted at the Governor House in Karachi in the presence of Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and members of the provincial cabinet.
Th oath was administered by Chief Justice of the Sindh High Court Justice Sajjad Ali Shah. The decision to replace him with Dr Ishratul Ebad was taken during a meeting between Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and President Mamnoon Hussain, on Wednesday.
Pakistan Peoples Party, the largest political party in Sindh, had complained that they had not been taken into confidence regarding the decision by the federal government. Today, Dr Ebad’s 14-year tenure will end as a new governor take oath.
Dr Ishratul Ebad became controversial after his verbal spat with Pak Sarzameen Party chief Syed Mustafa Kamal, in which the two traded barbs.
Saeed-uz-Zaman Siddiqui profile:
The former CJ is considered close to the ruling party and was also the PML-N candidate for the President against PPP’s Asif Ali Zardari in 2008.
He was the chief justice during the 1999 military coup by General Pervez Musharraf. He defied the request to take a new oath under the Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO) saying that “taking oath under the PCO, in my opinion, will be a deviation from the oath I had taken to defend the constitution of 1973”.
Ebad, Kamal row:
Dr Ishratul Ebad who became Sindh’s youngest governor on Dec 27, 2002 following a power-sharing agreement between the MQM, and then president Pervez Musharraf.
He remained in the office since then despite many ups and downs and controversies.
Things started to change when Pak Sarzameen Party chief Mustafa Kamal accused Ishratul Ebad for corruption, violence and land-grabbing in the city. Dr Ishrat denied all the allegations and called Mustafa an “extremely dishonourable and unfaithful man”.
Ebad offered to join PPP:
According to the sources, in a meeting last month PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto had also offered Dr Ishratul Ebad to join the party as a ‘key leader’. However, Chief Minsiter Murad Ali Shah denied making any such request to the governor۔