Pakistan presidential election: Counting begins as voting concludes; Zardari sweeps Balochistan, Achakzai leads in KP

    The Hawk
    March9/ 2024
    Last Updated:

    Pakistan's Presidential Election sees Asif Ali Zardari leading with significant votes across National and Provincial Assemblies amidst opposition and boycotts. Final results awaited.

    Pakistan presidential election voting ended

    Islamabad: The voting in the presidential election in Pakistan concluded in the National Assembly and all provincial assemblies at 4 pm. The counting process is now in progress.
    In the Balochistan Assembly, the coalition government's nominee, Asif Ali Zardari, secured a clean sweep, with all 47 members casting their votes in his favour. None voted for PTI-backed Mahmood Khan Achakzai, while 15 members were absent from the assembly, Dawn reported citing unofficial results.

    In the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, PTI-backed SIC candidate Achakzai garnered 91 votes, surpassing PPP's Zardari, who received only 17 votes. Out of 118 members, 109 cast their ballots, with one vote being rejected.
    In the Sindh Assembly, Zardari secured 58 votes, while Achakzai received three votes.
    According to preliminary results, Zardari won 246 votes in the Punjab Assembly, while his opponent Achakzai managed to only get 100 votes.
    Out of the 352 votes cast, six were rejected. The counting of votes took place under the Election Commission of Pakistan's presiding officer, Nisar Durrani, according to Dawn.
    Several parties, like Maulana Fazlur Rehman's Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI) and Jamaat-e-Islami boycotted the election of Pakistan's 14th president.
    Two prominent candidates, Asif Ali Zardari, the joint nominee of PPP and PML-N, and Mahmood Khan Achakzai from the Sunni Ittehad Council, are the contenders for the presidential office. The current ruling coalition, comprising PML-N, PPP, and MQM-P, has thrown its support behind Asif Ali Zardari.
    The president is chosen by an electoral college consisting of members from the Senate, the National Assembly, and the four provincial assemblies. A joint session of the parliament is being conducted at the parliament house in Islamabad, where members from both the National Assembly and the Senate will cast their votes, according to ARY News.
    Simultaneously, provincial assemblies are convening their sessions for the presidential election. The Election Commission of Pakistan has designated all four assemblies as polling stations for the smooth conduct of the electoral process.
    The breakdown of voting members includes at least 162 from the provincial assembly in Sindh, 353 in Punjab, 65 in Balochistan, and 115 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, all contributing to the election of the new president.
    With a majority in all assemblies and the Senate, Asif Ali Zardari, the co-chairman of PPP, is poised to secure the presidency for the second time.