Islamabad: Imran Khan will stay in the chief minister's annex in Punjab House in Islamabad on weekdays and spend the weekend at his private home in Banigala after being sworn-in as the prime minister, a senior party official said on Wednesday. In his victory speech, Khan, Chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) had announced that he would not use the palatial Prime Minister House as his residence and that his party would later decide the fate of the building. Khan will live in the chief minister's annex in Punjab House after being sworn-in as prime minister, senior PTI leader Naeemul Haq said.
"Punjab House is in every way an appropriate place for Khan sahib to live in," said Haq, adding that Punjab House was not too far from the Prime Minister's Office either. The prime minister-in-waiting will stay in the annex for 4-5 days each week, and spend the weekend at his residence in Banigala, Haq was quoted as saying by Dawn newspaper.
Haq also said that Khan does not want traffic to be stopped because of him, and does not want to create any difficulties for the city's residents. He also said that he has had many discussions with security agencies and is confident about the arrangements. Security has already been deployed around Khan's Banigala residence, including personnel of Islamabad traffic police and Rangers.
Islamabad Chief Commissioner Joudat Ayaz, Inspector General of Police Islamabad Jan Mohammad and other senior officers then visited Banigala to discuss security with Haq, and said the residential area was open and vulnerable to threat. Subsequently, Khan had agreed not to use Banigala as his official residence, and instead asked for the lowest category house at the Ministers' Enclave. Since the necessary protocol for a prime minister cannot be implemented there, the senior officers advised Khan against using a flat and to instead pick a house, to which Khan agreed.
While the day of the oath-taking ceremony has still not been finalised Haq said the PTI wants it to happen preferably on August 14 or 15.
He reiterated that Khan wanted the ceremony to be simple, and that the guest list is still to be finalised.