All Gathered Info, Review, Dramatic Conflict on a non-political issue Of Selection Of COAS Of Pakistan.
ISLAMABAD: It’s almost now time to take what is likely one of the most challenging decisions of its term to choose who will be the next chief of Pakistan’s Army.
In accordance with Article 243 (3) in the Constitution of Pakistan, the president selects the services of chiefs on the advice of the premier. Schedule V-A to the Rules of Business, which details the types of cases that must be submitted prior to being presented for approval, states the following “the appointment of, an above the rank of, lieutenant-general in the army and equivalent ranks in the other Defence Services will be made by the prime minister in consultation with the president”.
The Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) leader who is a member of the federal cabinet said in the background talks that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif may begin discussions about the appointment by September’s end and then possibly make a final decision on the selection of upcoming Army Chief before the middle of September.
There is a general consensus that he’ll consult his allies from the coalition in power before making an official decision. An insider from the Pakistan Peoples Party, however, it was suggested that the party might not be interested in getting involved since It is in the hands of the PM to make the final decision on the selection of the upcoming army chief.
As per Constitutional Article 243(3) in the Constitution, The president nominates the Army Chiefs of the services upon the advice of the Prime Minister……
Four of the six top Lt-Gens at the time of Current COAS Qamar Javed
Bajwa’s retirement will be from the same batch, while a fifth is senior to almost the entire lot.
Schedule V-A in the Rules of Business, which defines the types of cases that must be submitted in the presence of the premier for approval, stipulates that “[…] the appointment of, and over the rank of lieutenant general in the Army and the equivalent rank in the different Defence Services will be made by the prime minister after the concert with the president.”
The way in the way this process is carried out however isn’t clear in the rules books. There are no specific criteria established for evaluating candidates to be elevated, besides the vague requirement that the general who is chosen for the job of leading an army must be a commander of a corps.
The practice follows the General Headquarters (GHQ) sends a list of four to five lieutenant-generals with the highest rank and their personnel dossiers to the Ministry of Defence, which forwards the information directly to the Prime Minister, who will choose the one he thinks is most appropriate for the position.
The defense ministry could review the names before presenting them to the prime minister. However, it isn’t often the case and the department acts as an office for the post.
The generals’ credentials are discussed at either the Cabinet or in the Prime Minister’s Office or within the cabinet. The decision is based on the prime minister’s “informal consultative with the incoming army chief, his own views and discussions with his most trusted advisors.
Keen observers also speak of an “institutional recommendation” which is a recommendation to the Prime Minister regarding the candidate of a certain choice. But, at the very least, two defense secretary’s former colleagues have denied this assertion. They say it’s only the army chief who is stepping down who is in an ‘informal meeting of the Prime Minister who has personal input into whom he thinks will succeed him.
Of the 10 army commanders that the nation has had in past since 1972, only five of them were chosen by the incumbent’s older brother Mian Nawaz Sharif, in two separate terms as the prime minister. The older Sharif was frequently accused of appointing officials who he considered to be an “apna banda” (his man). However, none of the appointments went well for him.
The incident has apparently caused Sharifs Sharifs with the conviction that they’ll never achieve their goal. Certain PML-N leaders have said in interviews with a background that they have somewhat taken the decision that instead of falling into the temptation to find an ideal candidate instead, they will make an appointment based on their seniority themselves.
“Then, no matter how things turn out, we will at least be content that no personal choices were involved,” one political party leader said.
A different faction within the party believes that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif could simply accept the advice of the chief.
The Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa has been scheduled to retire at the end of the weeks of November. The appointment of the army chief was supposed to last for three years, however, Gen Bajwa was awarded an additional term of three years in 2019, following an incident of political tension. The then-prime minister Imran Khan had given him an extension in August, however, it was the Supreme Court later demanded legislation concerning the re-appointment of chiefs of the service.
The Parliament was in compliance in January 2020 and allowed the premier to increase the terms of chiefs of services at his sole discretion. However, the law had set a 64-year age limit as the minimum age that a service chief has to retire.
COAS Gen Bajwa, still 61 and 61, is therefore qualified for a new period. This has resulted in some speculation suggesting that the current incumbent could be looking for or interested in an extension. According to a military source, Gen Bajwa has told his colleagues that he is retiring in November. Inter-Services Public Relations, to confirm that the general will indeed retire.
The chief of the army isn’t the only post with four stars that are set to be open in November. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC) Gen Nadeem Raza will be going into retirement at the same time. The simultaneous appointment of two generals with four stars will give the government some room to select the commander of the army without creating too much controversy within the upper ranks.
It is interesting to note that Four of the six senior lieutenant generals in the period when Gen Bajwa’s resignation was announced come as part of the same cohort. The degree of seniority for this group is determined by a technical method (i.e., by the PA number they were assigned during their time during PMA PMA as well as could or might not have importance in the event that it comes to the next CJCSC and COAS are selected. The other two are, however of them, one is the most senior to almost all the other lot, while the second one is junior.
Lt-Gen Asim Munir
When the final decision on who will be to the post of CJCSC as well as COAS is taken, Lieutenant-General Asim Munir will be the most senior of the applicants. Even though he was promoted to the position of two-star general in September of 2018 He has appointed the COAS just two months after.
In the end, his four-year stint as Lt-Gen will come to an end on the 27th of November at the same time that CJCSC and COAS who are incumbents of CJCSC as well as the COAS will wear their army uniforms. Because the suggestions and the final decisions regarding the selection of the two generals with four stars will be taken sooner the decision will fall to Gen Bajwa to decide if his name should be included and then for the premier to decide on the final decision. Gen Bajwa is a top officer, but due to the technical issues involved, he might remain the dark horse of the proverbial.
Lt-Gen Munir joined the military through Lt-Gen Munir joined the service through Officers Training School (OTS) program in Mangla and was then commissioned in the Frontier Force Regiment. He has been a loyal advisor to the current COAS since he took over command of troops within the Force Command Northern Areas as a brigadier in the Army under Gen Bajwa who was at the time Commanding X Corps.
He was appointed DG Military Intelligence in early 2017 and, in October, the year following was made chief of the ISI. ISI chief. But his time as the most senior intelligence officer proved to be the most brief since the lieutenant-general replaced him with Lt-Gen Faiz Hashim within eight months at the request of the then PM Imran Khan. He was appointed as Gujranwala Corps commander in the Gujranwala Corps, a post in which he served for two years before being transferred to the GHQ as Quartermaster General.
Leave a Reply