Ali Mukhtab is the governor of Persopolis, the only city of the Bazhir tribes. When Alanna of Trebond visits Persopolis with the older squires when she is still a page, she inquires as to why Ali Mukhtab is governor of Persopolis when Martin of Meron hates the Bazhir. It is revealed that one of the provisions of the Bazhir treaty with the Old King was that a Bazhir remain governor of Persopolis so as to watch the Black City, home of the Ysandir or the Nameless Ones. Prince Jonathan asks Ali Mukhtab for a history of the Bazhir, which Ali Mukhtab sends to him years later.
It is revealed in The Woman Who Rides Like a Man that Mukhtab is also the Voice of the Tribes, a leader of the Bazhir who joins with the Bazhir tribes people each night through tribal fires knowing their thoughts and conflicts and trying to resolve them. The Voice also has some insight to the future. Ali Mukhtab decides that the only way to end the feuds between Tortall and the Bazhir is to make Prince Jonathan, the future ruler of Tortall, the Voice because no Bazhir tribes may make war on the Voice. Mukhtab dies when he passes this power to Jonathan and is therefore responsible for the peaceful union of the Bazhir with the rest of Tortall.