Lt Gen Syed Asim Munir to be the next army chief, govt announces
The prime minister on Thursday decided to appoint Lieutenant General Syed Asim Munir as the new Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) and Lieutenant General Sahir Shamshad as Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC).
Taking to twitter, federal information and broadcasting minister Marriyum Aurangzeb said that the Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has appointed Lt. Gen Sahir Shamshad Mirza as the Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC) and Lt. Gen Syed Asim Munir as the Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) as per his constitutional authority.
She informed that a summary has been sent to the President Arif Alvi.
Defence Minister Khawaja Asif took to twitter and said that after the advice to President Alvi on COAS appointment it’s time to test Imran Khan that whether he wants to strengthen the institution of national defense or make it controversial.
“It’s the test of President Alvi too that whether he will follow political advice or constitutional and legal advice. As the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, it is his duty to protect the country from political crisis,” he added.
On the other hand, PTI chairman Imran Khan said that he and President Alvi will act as per the constitution and law after the summary one army chief’s appointment.
Outgoing Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa was supposed to retire in 2019, but three months before his retirement, the then Prime Minister Imran Khan extended his tenure by three years in August 2019.
However, the Supreme Court (SC) suspended the extension in November 2019.
The apex court extended General Bajwa’s term for six months and asked the Parliament to pass legislation on the re-appointment of services chiefs.
In January 2020, the PTI-led parliament passed legislation, putting the matter of the extension in the tenure of services chiefs at the discretion of the PM.
There were speculations that COAS Gen Bajwa was going to get an extension once again, but a few months ago the Army Chief himself denied all the rumors saying that he intends to retire this year.
Later, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the Pakistan Army’s public relations department, confirmed army chief’s retirement plans, while in the last few months, the Army Chief himself had categorically said that ‘he has no intention of continuing his tenure.’
The summary received by prime minister office by GHQ contains names of following lieutenant-generals of the Pakistan Army.
- Lt Gen Asim Munir
- Lt Gen Sahir Shamshad
- Lt Gen Azhar Abbas
- Lt Gen Nauman Mahmood
- Lt Gen Faiz Hameed
- Lt Gen Muhammad Aamer