Gohar Ayub Khan, the son of former president General Ayub Khan, passed away in Islamabad on Friday, according to his family.
Khan, 86, was moved to Kulsum International Hospital after his heart-rate suddenly increased, according to local media, and passed away shortly after reaching the facility. He is survived by two sons, including Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Omar Ayub, and two daughters. In a statement on X, formerly Twitter, Omar announced his father’s funeral would be held at 3 p.m. on Saturday (today) and he would be laid to rest in his native Rehana village of Haripur.
Khan, the second son of ex-president Ayub, was born on Jan. 15, 1937 and served in the Pakistan Army from 1959 to 1962. After taking early retirement as a captain, he entered politics in 1974 and contested his first National Assembly election from Haripur on a Pakistan National Alliance ticket in 1977.
He became the speaker of the National Assembly in 1990 after winning the National Assembly seat on a ticket of the Islami Jamhoori Ittehad. His tenure as speaker is most notably recalled for his resistance to the president’s order to dissolve the assembly under Article 58(2b). He subsequently filed a petition in the Supreme Court that led to the assembly’s restoration in 1993.
From 1993 to 1997, he served as deputy opposition leader during the PPP’s government. In 1997, under the PMLN government, he was initially appointed the foreign minister by then-prime minister Nawaz Sharif and later the minister for water and power. Following Sharif’s ouster through a military coup, he joined the Pakistan Muslim League (Quaid) along with his son, Omar Ayub. In 2012, he and Omar both rejoined the PMLN, before once again departing the party ahead of the 2018 general elections.
In a statement, the PTI said the party’s leadership and workers were bereaved over the death of its secretary general’s father and expressed sympathies for the bereaved family. President Arif Alvi and caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar similarly expressed grief over the ex-speaker’s demise.
Expressing his grief, NA Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf offered condolences to the deceased’s son and described Gohar as an “astute politician and a considerate human being.”
PMLN President Shehbaz Sharif recalled his “long acquaintance” with the late speaker and prayed for the fortitude of his son and the entire family.