National Assembly To Elect New PM Tomorrow

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Islamabad (July 31, 2017): National Assembly will elect new Leader of the House tomorrow (Tuesday).

According to the details, parliament will meet on Tuesday to elect a new prime minister after the Supreme Court disqualified Nawaz Sharif following an investigation into corruption allegations against his family. The assembly would meet at 3:00 pm Tuesday (1000 GMT) to elect the top slot.

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Six candidates, including Shahid Khaqan Abbasi of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, are in the fray to contest the election at the specially convened session of the house at three in the afternoon.

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Other candidates in the run include PPP’s Syed Khurshid Shah and Syed Naveed Qamar, PTI’s Sheikh Rashid Ahmad, Jamaat-e-Islami’s Sahibzada Tariqullah and MQM’s Kishwar Zahra.

Speaker National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq scrutinized the nomination papers and found nomination papers of all the candidates in order.

Sheikh Rashid Ahmad raised some objections to the nomination of Shahid Khaqan Abbasi but these were rejected.

The candidates can withdraw their nomination papers any time before the start of the election process.

The Speaker will read out names of the validly nominated candidates and ask members, who wish to vote in favour of their candidates to pass in single file through the designated entrance.Tellers posted there will record their votes and after a member has recorded his vote, he would not return to the Chamber till completion of the voting process.

Opposition parties met in Islamabad today before filing of the nomination papers to agree on a consensus candidate but failed to make a breakthrough.

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The meeting remained inconclusive as the parties failed to name a consensus candidate to face the government nominee, however opposition parties leaders decided to meet again on Tuesday before the election to evolve consensus on a single candidate.

After submitting nomination papers, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) candidate for prime minister, vowed that the party will win tomorrow’s premiership vote with a landslide.

Talking to the media Abbasi said the government’s policy [before Nawaz Sharif’s dismissal by the Supreme Court on Friday] on all matters will continue.

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When asked about the incoming federal cabinet, he said the cabinet will be chosen in consultation with the party.

Abbasi, the petroleum minister in the recently dissolved cabinet, was accompanied by several senior PML-N leaders while submitting his nomination papers.

The parliamentary party meeting of the ruling PML-N decided on Saturday to make Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif — the brother of the ousted premier — to be the party’s candidate for the slot. However, at the meeting, Nawaz announced that former petroleum minister, Abbasi, will be the premier until Shehbaz is elected to a National Assembly seat and subsequently made the prime minister.

“If you support anyone after me, I ask you to support Shehbaz Sharif,” said Nawaz during the meeting, held at the Punjab House a day after Nawaz’s ouster by the apex court.

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“It will take Shehbaz Sharif 50-55 days to take over as prime minister. He will have to contest [national] elections. For the interim period, I am recommending Shahid Khaqan Abbasi for the position of prime minister.”

Then prime minister Nawaz Sharif was disqualified from holding public office by the Supreme Court on Friday.

Sharif was disqualified under Article 62 (1) (f) of the Constitution over his failure to disclose un-withdrawn receivables constituting assets from a UAE-based company. It implied he was not ‘honest’ and ‘truthful’, as per the country’s Constitution.

The ruling party named Sharif s younger brother Shahbaz as his successor over the weekend, but he must first enter parliament by contesting the seat left vacant by Sharif.

In the meantime the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), which enjoys a majority in parliament, has nominated ex-oil minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi as interim prime minister.

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The top court ousted Sharif Friday after an investigation into corruption allegations against him and his family, bringing his historic third term in power to an unceremonious end and briefly plunging the nuclear-armed nation into political instability.

Nawaz Sharif was the 15th prime minister in Pakistan s 70-year history — roughly half of which was under military rule — to be ousted before completing a full term.

Abbasi is set to be rubber-stamped as placeholder in the parliamentary vote. The opposition could also field a candidate but has little chance of securing enough votes in the 342-seat house.

The younger Sharif — who is chief minister of the country s most populous province of Punjab — has so far managed to remain unscathed by the corruption allegations engulfing his brother s family.On Saturday the Election Commission said fresh elections would be held in Nawaz Sharif s former constituency, in the family s power base in Punjab, in a process that could take up to 45 days.

At least 20,000 supporters of Pakistan s main opposition leader Imran Khan crowded into an arena on Sunday evening for a raucous rally — dubbed the “Thanksgiving Rally” — to celebrate Sharif s ousting.

With corruption allegations engulfing the powerful Sharif family — a dominant force in the country s politics for the last three decades — cricketer-turn-politician Khan is hoping to win support for his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party.

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“We will start accountability from the top,” he told a sea of supporters, including hundreds of women and families, who defied the heat and humidity to cheer him on.

Criticising the dynastic nature of the Sharif transfer of power, he demanded: “Is there no one else in your (Sharif s) party to make prime minister?… It s not democracy, it s a kingdom.”

More than 3,000 security officers were on hand at the rally, which had a festive atmosphere with Khan supporters decked out in the party s red and green colours. Some estimated the crowd size at as high as 40,000.

“I am here for solidarity with Imran Khan. He is the only leader who can rid this nation of dynastic politics,” said Iqbal Shah, 60, who had travelled from the country s northwest to support Khan.

Khan himself also faces graft allegations in court linked to the non-disclosure of assets and offshore companies — similar charges that brought down Sharif.

The case, brought by a member of Sharif s PML-N party, seeks to have Khan disqualified on the same contentious clause in the constitution that ousted Sharif — the requirement that Pakistani politicians be honest.

Khan s lawyers have denied all charges and say his wealth stems from his lucrative cricketing career.

Related News:

Abbasi Calls Shah, Seeks Support for Election

Opposition Fails to Field Joint Candidate

Originally Posted on Abbtak TV

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