Former PM Zafarullah Jamali passes away

Former premier died due to heart and kidney failure, accordingly to hospital sources


Our Correspondent December 02, 2020
Former Prime Minister Zafarullah Jamali. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD:

Former prime minister Mir Zafarullah Khan Jamali on Wednesday passed away at a hospital in Rawalpindi at the age of 76, his son confirmed.

Jamali, who served as the prime minister from November 2002 to June 2004, was shifted to the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology & National Institute of Heart Diseases (AFIC-NIHD) in Rawalpindi after suffering a heart attack last week.

Jamali had been put on a ventilator in the Critical Care Unit of the hospital for the past few days. According to hospital sources, he died of heart and kidney failure. The sources also said that he would be laid to rest at his ancestral village, Rojhan Jamali.

Born on January 1, 1944, Jamali served as the 15th prime minister of Pakistan from 2002 until his resignation in 2004. He was the first prime minister of the country from Balochistan.

Jamali entered into politics during his college days, supporting Fatima Jinnah against the then military ruler Ayub Khan in the presidential election. His uncle Mir Jaffar Khan Jamali had appointed him as a security guard of Fatima Jinnah. Mir Jaffar Khan used to call him ‘Jabal Khan’.

In 1970, he joined the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and took part in 1970 general election for the first time, but couldn’t succeed. He was elected to the Balochistan Assembly for the first time in 1977 on a PPP ticket. However, he left the party soon after.

He was elected as a member of the National Assembly in 1985 general election from Naseerabad constituency, and inducted into the federal cabinet of then prime minister Muhammad Khan Junejo and given the portfolio of federal minister of water and power.

Jamali was appointed as the caretaker chief minister of Balochistan in 1988 after Gen Ziaul Haq dismissed the Junejo government. He was re-elected as a member of the provincial assembly of Balochistan in 1988 election and became the chief minister of province.

He was elected as the member of the Senate in 1994 and again in 1997. He also ran for the seat of National Assembly in the 1990 general election, but was defeated by a PPP candidate. He was re-elected as the member of the provincial assembly in 1993 election by defeating a PPP candidate.

Jamali was re-appointed caretaker as the chief minister of Balochistan in 1997. He was elected as a member of the National Assembly in 2002 election on the ticket of the PML-Quaid-e-Azam and was elected prime minister. He resigned in 2004.

He won the 2013 general elections as an independent, but later joined the PML-N and used to sit on the treasury benches in the previous assembly. The PML-N leadership had issued a show-cause notice to him in October 2017 when he did not vote in line with the party’s policy on a bill allowing Nawaz Sharif to assume the office of the party president despite his disqualification by the Supreme Court in the Panama Papers case.

Jamali’s father Mir Shahnawaz Khan Jamali was not directly involved in active politics, but was a jirga member and landlord of the area. Jamali got his early education at his native village and later studied at Lawrence Collage, Ghora Gali, Murree.

He then graduated from the Government College Lahore and got Masters degree in history from the Punjab University. During his school and college days, he was a very good player of hockey. He also remained captain of the varsity’s hockey team.

As a sportsman, he continued efforts for the promotion of hockey in the country and was twice appointed as chief selector of the Pakistan hockey team. It was under his supervision that Pakistan won the Atlanta Olympics title.

Condolences pour in

As the news of Jamali’s death broke, condolences poured in from various personalities including president Arif Alvi, Prime Minister Imran Khan and Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa. “My condolences and prayers go to his family,” Imran wrote on his official Twitter handle.

The chief of army staff (COAS) expressed heartfelt condolences on the sad demise of Jamali. “May Allah bless his soul and give strength to the bereaved family to bear this irreparable loss, Ameen,” he was quoted by ISPR as saying.

 

Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan and other politicians also expressed their condolences. Balochistan National Party (BNP-M) President Sardar Akhtar Mengal condoled the death of Kamali in a tweet.

Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood paid tributes to late Jamali saying that he was a true gentlemen. “Deeply grieved at the death of Mir Zafarullah Jamali, former PM of Pakistan. A true gentleman full of humour and wit. Will be missed. May his soul RIP,” he said.

(WITH INPUT FROM NEWS DESK)

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