Islamabad 04 Sept 2018
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s candidate for Pakistan’s President elections today on Tuesday, Dr Arif Alvi is unofficially declared as elected 13th President of Pakistan as the country’s electoral college comprising of Senate, National and Provincial assemblies – cast their votes on Tuesday.
The counting of votes is under way, and Election Commission of Pakistan is scheduled to announce official results tomorrow.
“I am grateful to God that the PTI-nominated candidate has been successful in the presidential race today,” Alvi said in his victory speech. “I am also thankful to Imran Khan for nominating me for such a big responsibility.”
Out of 432 votes cast by members of the National Assembly and Senate, Alvi secured 212 votes while opposition’s Maulana Fazlur Rehman bagged 131 votes. Pakistan Peoples Party’s Aitzaz Ahsan managed 81 votes while eight votes were rejected.
Voting via a secret ballot commenced simultaneously in all assemblies and the Senate at 1000 AM, and concluded around 0400 PM.
Prime Minister Imran Khan cast his vote as polling entered its last stretch, and left the Parliament shortly after doing so.
Members of the National Assembly (NA) and Senate began the polling early and Speaker NA Asad Qaiser was the first to cast his vote in the Lower House.. The parliamentarians cast their votes through secret ballots and in alphabetical order.
Members of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) Assembly commenced the polling process at 1000 AM. The polling station was established inside the K-P assembly hall and the Chief Justice Provincial High Court was the presiding officer for the elections.
K-P Assembly had a total 124 members, presently, 112 members were part of the electoral college. A total of 12 seats are empty.
PTI and allies had 79 members in the house while the joint opposition including Awami National Party (ANP), Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and (PML-N), MMA and the PPP had a total 33 votes.
Opposition parties failed to reach a consensus earlier and pitch a joint candidate. The parties blamed each other for the division, which will benefit PTI’s Alvi.
Division in opposition ranks over fielding of a joint candidate started when the PPP unilaterally nominated Aitzaz and sought the support of other opposition groups. The PML-N, the second largest party in Parliament and largest among opposition groups, declined to support the PPP nominee.
“I have no idea whether we have the vote or not. However, PTI’s victory will be Zardari’s doing, and he deserves the medal for it. We had planned with the PPP to bring up a strong opposition. However, Asif Ali Zardar ruined the opposition’s strength. We could have made history if we had unveiled the reality behind the rigged polls,” PML-N’s Khawaja Saad Rafique said on Tuesday.
Several direct and indirect contacts and a multiparty huddle failed to bridge the differences between the opposition groups.
The incumbent President Mamnoon Hussain took oath on September 9, 2013, and his five-year term is set to expire on September 8. According to Clause 4 of Article 41 of the Constitution, which deals with matters related to presidential election, “Election to the office of president shall be held not earlier than 60 days and not later than 30 days before the expiration of term of the president in office.”
This means the election for new president was due by August 8. However, the Constitution explains that in case the assemblies are not functioning, the presidential poll will be held within 30 days after the general election which was held this year on July 25.
Going by the constitutional provision, the presidential poll was due on August 23. However, this deadline also could be met, and now the delay would be condoned using Article 254 of the Constitution.
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