Who’ll be the next prime minister?
Following the disqualification of Nawaz Sharif as prime minister by the Supreme Court last week, the National Assembly will elect the country’s eighteenth prime minister today.
Major political parties have already fielded their respective candidates for the premier slot.
The ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) has selected former petroleum minister and veteran politician Shahid Khaqan Abbasi as its candidate for prime minister.
The assembly’s second biggest party in terms of numbers, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), has nominated Opposition Leader Khursheed Shah and Naveed Qamar, while Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has fielded Sheikh Rasheed as its nominee.
Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan and Jamaat-e-Islami have named Kishwar Zehra and Sahibzada Tariqullah respectively for the election of the new prime minister.
Although the PML-N holds a majority in the National Assembly and can easily elect its own candidate with just its members, the opposition intends to ‘put up a fight’. However, the opposition parties’ meeting on Monday failed to result in agreement over a joint candidate.
At present, there are three seats empty, including the one of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, in the 342-seat Lower House of the Parliament.
It is likely that all of the remaining 339 members will take part in today’s voting process.
The winning candidate requires 172 votes to win, whereas sources said the PML-N candidate can easily bank on getting around 214 votes of PML-N MNAs as well as the government’s allies’.
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