The new Chief Minister of Balochistan, Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo, is administered the oath of office by Governor Syed Zahoor Ahmed Agha.
Following the removal of Nawab Sanaullah Zehri as Balochistan’s governor in 2018, Abdul Qudoos Bizenjo, a native of Awaran province, served as acting chief minister from January 13, 2018, to June 7, 2018. He submitted the no-confidence motion against the influential Nawab who resigned after reading the writing on the wall that he could no longer stand up against the country’s powerful authorities that had decided to depose him. Bizenjo won without knowing how to play chess.
He seized power for the third time in three years in Balochistan, thus becoming CM once again after deposing former chief minister Jam Kamal Khan Alyani similarly. Bizenjo was elected unopposed on October 29, 2021. He has beaten other politicians, according to a sitting minister, because he is the weakest political figure that suits everyone around us.
Bizenjo’s second term as chief minister of Balochistan is intended to repair all that went wrong during his first term in office, which began in 2018. When the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was being humiliated in Balochistan, the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) tried to ingratiate itself with the security apparatus before the formation of the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP).
Former dictator Pervez Musharraf, with the help of the Pakistan military and ISI, decided to retaliate against Zardari. The first Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) was established in 2004 on the spur of the moment so that Zardari could govern the province. Instead of joining the PPP, most of the Balochistan-based electables joined the BAP, which subsequently formed an Alyani-led provincial government affiliated with Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), the party in power at Center.
Analysts are speculating that Zardari is attempting to reset the trajectory of what went wrong several years ago. It’s for this reason, sources close on the inside claimed, that the PPP leadership asked Nawab Sanaullah Zehri to stay in touch with Bizenjo despite his involvement in his ouster. He and other politicians, including retired Lt Gen Qadir Baloch who has recently joined the PPP, have lately been seen frequently around Bizenjo, suggesting that he has complied with the party’s leadership’s advice.
One of them was with the PML-N and left because he or she considered it to be anti-establishment. Insiders in the BAP tell Dawn that their party, especially the Bizenjo-led group, may join the PPP if invited to do so before the next general election.
According to Prof. Mohammad Arif, a political science professor at the University of Balochistan, anyone who forms a government in Pakistan takes on the responsibility for governing Balochistan; nevertheless, owing to their limited number of seats in the National Assembly, people from less populous areas are less concerned about issues affecting the province.
This is not only about the numbers, but also personal values. Bizenjo won his provincial assembly seat in 2013 with just 544 votes, which is the lowest number ever received by a provincial assembly candidate; he also served as deputy speaker of the Balochistan Assembly from June 2013 to December 2015 before becoming the chief minister in 2018 for five months.
Analyst Jalal Noorzai, who was disappointed with the removal of the Alyani government despite its faults, claims no one has yet produced any evidence of corruption against the individual who had served as CM for over three years. Sources close of Alyani tell us that he refused to sign a huge contract worth $20 billion—worth Rs100 billion—approved by Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani and other Islamabad-based politicians. That is why he lost his seat; Sanjrani kept lobbying against him in corridors of power. MNAs from the PTI have also been targeted on Twitter by Alyani, along with senators from PPP and PMLN.
The case of Balochistan’s politics is odd, to say the least: everyone, including the Baloch nationalists, appears on the same page when it comes to being given a piece. This is why, under the banner of the Balochistan National Party (BNP), Baloch nationalists are now rallying around Bizenjo for their share of the pie. Sanaullah Baloch is rallying even stronger around CM Bizenjo and Senate chairman Sanjrani, according to reports claiming that the BNP will receive two portfolios as well as within the BNP, they are attempting to persuade party leader Sardar Akhtar Mengal to allow them to take a slice of the pie.
Who is Bizenjo, and what does he or she represent?
Mr. Bizenjo, a resident of Awaran and the eldest son out of five children, was born in 1974 and educated up until the age of 14 at home before going on to earn a master’s degree in English from the University of Balochistan in 2000.
His late father Abdul Majid Bizenjo was previously elected three times from the same Awaran constituency. It is his third term as a congressman from Awaran, and he has returned to office for the first time since 2000, during the dictatorial reign of General Pervez Musharraf. Jan Mohammad is Balochistan’s first five-yearly chief minister.
He was elected to the National Assembly of Pakistan on a PML-Q ticket in 2013, and he serves as one of Nawab Aslam Raisani’s ministers. In 2018, he was reelected from Awaran again. Despite being elected for over 30 years from his hometown of Jhao in Awaran, his native community is woefully lacking today.