Imran Khan secures 176 votes, from World Cup to being Pakistan’s 22nd Prime Minister

Imran Khan secures 176 votes, from World Cup to being Pakistan’s 22nd Prime Minister

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ISLAMABAD: Amid a clear divide between the two main opposition parties, the Pakistan Peoples’ Party and Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan is set to be elected as the new prime minister of the country today.

The National Assembly will elect the 22nd prime minister of Pakistan during a special session on Friday in what will be a one-on-one contest between Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

The session began under the chairmanship of Speaker Asad Qaiser. The process to elect the country’s premier for the next five-year term commenced with those supporting Imran gathering Lobby A and Shehbaz’s supporters gathering in Lobby B. The process will be an open ballot voting process. Lawmakers have told the authorities of their vote and will then head to the lobbies assigned to each of the candidates.

Entering the lobby is a clear sign that you have voted for the said nominee.

The PTI’s Imran Khan and PML-N’s Shehbaz Sharif are vying for the coveted position–with the former tipped favorite. Other lawmakers also arrived for the session which was scheduled to commence at 3:30pm.

The PTI is in a comfortable position to elect Mr. Khan as premier in one-on-one contest with PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif.

5:39pm: Imran Khan has been elected as the Leader of the House and will be the next prime minister of Pakistan. Speaker Asad Qaiser announced the results.

Imran Khan received 176 votes, while Shehbaz Sharif received 96 votes.

5:30pm: The voting has ended. The supporters for Imran Khan voted in ‘Lobby A’ while the supporters for Shehbaz Sharif voted in ‘Lobby B’. The parliamentarians have returned to the main hall to their respective seats. The counting is underway and will be announced soon.

4:53pm: The voting process starts. Two Lobbies of the house have been designated with the name of two contestants. The speaker instructed the MNAs who wish to vote for Imran Khan to proceed to a particular lobby while those wanting to vote for Shehbaz Sharif to another lobby.

The MNAs belonging to the PPP and Jamaat-e-Islami didn’t proceed to any lobby and opted to abstain from the voting.

4:47pm: The speaker explained to the house the procedure of the election for the leader of the house. He ordered to vacate the lobbies so that the voting process could begin.

He further ordered that bells be rung outside the house for the attention of the MNAs so that they could enter the house after which all its door will be closed.

4:30pm: PML-N MNA Murtaza Javed Abbasi, while speaking on the floor of the assembly, said the dignity of the august house was being destroyed by sloganeering.

4:35pm: Speaker Asad Qaiser instructed guests sitting in the gallery not to chant slogans in order to upheld the dignity of the house.

4:24pm: The National Assembly session summoned to elect new leader of the house has begun with Speaker Asad Qaiser in the chair. The session begun with recitation from Holy Quran.

It started about an hour late than its scheduled time.

4:21pm: PML-N president Shehbaz Sharif and other party MNAs have arrived in the parliament. Shehbaz shook hands with his arch-rival Imran Khan before taking his seat.

3:39pm: PTI chief Imran Khan and PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari have arrived in the house.

3:26pm: PML-N leader Ahsan Iqbal, while speaking to reporters at the parliament, said his party members voted for the combined opposition’s candidates for the slot of speaker and deputy speaker of the National Assembly.

He said he hoped the parties’ part of the opposition alliance will reciprocate in the same manner by voting for Shehbaz Sharif.

3:13pm: A consultative meeting of the PTI parliamentary party with party chief Imran Khan in the chair has concluded.

2:55pm: PTI MNA Ali Zaidi has expressed the hope that the party chief will win the election for the PM office with a convincing lead. He hoped that Mr Khan will fulfill the promises he has made to the people of Pakistan.

2:39pm: PML-N president Shehbaz Sharif has arrived at the assembly building. He is chairing a meeting of the parliamentary party to discuss strategy ahead of the election for the premier’s office.

When a reporter questioned him about whether PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari and his party will vote for him, he asked the reporter to put this question to the PPP leaders instead.

2:30pm: The PTI chief has arrived at the parliament to hold last-minute consultations with party leaders before the crucial National Assembly session which is scheduled to start at 3:30 pm.

A day earlier, the PPP decided in principle to stay away from today’s vote in the lower house of parliament after the PML-N’s refusal to change its candidate for the slot.

According to PTI spokesperson Fawad Chaudhry, the party chief is in a comfortable position to clinch the coveted post by bagging over 180 votes.

The party’s tally in the National Assembly is 152 which climbs to 183 after addition of its small coalition partners, including Pakistan Muslim League Quaid-e-Azam (PML-Q), Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), and Balochistan Awami Party (BAP).

The PML-N has 82 members in the house, followed by the PPP with 53 lawmakers, the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) 15 members, and the Awami National Party (ANP) one MNA.

How leader of the house is elected?

According to the rules of business of the National Assembly, leader of the house, who automatically becomes prime minister, is elected by the division of the house. Lobbies will be designated with the name of each candidate.

Those who wish to vote for a particular candidate will proceed to that lobby designated with his or her name.

Before voting begins, bells will be rung outside the house for the attention of members. This will happen for five minutes after which the doors of the house are shut for the PM’s election.

The speaker shall read out the resolution before the house and ask the MNAs to proceed to a certain lobby where tellers shall be posted to count votes.

After a member casts his vote, he is not required to return to the chamber until bells are rung. When the speaker will find that all the MNAs have recorded their votes, he shall announce conclusion of the voting.

Then, the bells will be rung for two minutes for the members to return to the chamber after which the speaker will announce the results.

The PTI has currently 152 members in the National Assembly. Seven of its allied parties’ take the tally to 183. The MQM-P has seven seats; Pakistan Muslim League and Balochistan Awami Party three each; Balochistan National Party four; Grand Democratic Alliance three and Awami Muslim League and Jamhoori Watan Party one each. Nine independent lawmakers have also joined the PTI.

With 82 members, the PML-N is the largest party on the opposition benches followed by the PPP with 53. The Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal has 15 MNAs and the Awami National Party, one.

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Rava is an online news portal providing recent news, editorials, opinions and advice on day to day happenings in Pakistan.

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