Military Establishment Wanted Shehbaz Sharif As PM In 2018, Claims Hamid Mir

Senior journalist Hamid Mir claimed that the establishment’s preference was to make Shehbaz Sharif prime minister in 2018, but because the PML-N president “refused to betray” his brother and his party, the establishment was left with no choice but to go with Imran Khan.

Mir said that he was telling everyone a fact that nobody would be able to refute.

Mir claimed that a few weeks before the 2018 election, there was a meeting between then army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, then DG ISI Lt Gen Naveed Mukhtar, and then DGCI Maj Gen Faiz Hameed. Mir alleged that Shehbaz Sharif was invited to this meeting, where the establishment tried to convince Shehbaz that he would not have to take all his orders from his elder brother and party boss Nawaz. But according to Mir, Shehbaz politely declined this generous ‘offer’, saying that the final decisions will always rest with the party and Nawaz Sharif, so he (Shehbaz) should not be expected to go against that.

This is why the establishment chose to bring in Imran Khan as the prime minister in 2018. In that sense, Mir argues, ‘credit’ also goes to Shehbaz Sharif – not just the establishment – for making Khan prime minister in 2018.

Mir also suggested that journalists ask prime minister Shehbaz Sharif, who they can meet more easily than the retired generals, about the veracity of what he (Mir) had claimed.

December 26,2022


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