N Victory In Senate Polls Proved Nawaz Sharif `sub Pe Bhari'
Mar 07, 2018, 07:20
Pakistan'sruling party appears to have regained control of parliament's upper house - the Senate - after a day of secret voting by members of the federal parliament and representatives from four provincial assemblies, according to local media reports.
Winning control of the Senate could enable the PML-N to change the constitution to make Sharif eligible to hold office again when the party contests a national election due later this year.
The ECP had given all controlling officers powers of magistrate who can suspend the electoral process in case of irregularity.
New Senators are elected indirectly by provincial and national assemblies through proportional representation.
The opposition Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) now controls the 104-seat senate but is expected to be replaced by the PML-N as the single biggest party. Unlike the last senate elections in 2015, lawmakers were not even allowed to take their phones into the assemblies during the vote. Some observers project as much as a 37 seat haul which would fuel momentum for Shahbaz as the PML-N seeks another term in government in the lower house general elections in July.
In the Senate polls on Saturday, PML-N-backed independent candidates emerged as the largest party in the Upper House of Parliament.
Earlier, officials said that 46 senators will be elected by the four provincial assemblies, two by the National Assembly, and four by the lawmakers from tribal areas.
A total of 135 candidates, which includes 25 women, are contesting the 52 senate seats.
In Balochistan, a candidate needed just nine votes to become senator while in the biggest province of Punjab, 47 votes are needed to elect a senator.
In this regard, Mushahid Hussain Sayed has been given the responsibility to contact MQM-P and PML-F while KP PML-N President Amir Muqam has been directed to meet the leadership of Jamaat-e-Islami.
According to sources, the FATA senators demanded support from the PPP regarding the rights of tribal areas in return for support for the Senate chairman and deputy chairman positions.
The deposed prime minister also urged for accountability of those involved in horse trading and used money in the Senate elections.
Imran Khan of PTI said that his party would work to introduce direct elections for senators to root out corruption and use of money.
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