Nawaz Sharif elected Pakistan’s PM

Islamabad, June 5 (IANS) Nawaz Sharif was Wednesday elected Pakistan’s prime minister by a huge margin in an election held at the National Assembly here.

Nawaz Sharif won the prime minister’s slot by securing 244 of the total 317 votes cast in Wednesday’s poll, reported Xinhua.

Of Nawaz Sharif’s two rivals, Makhdoom Amin Fahim of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) secured 42 votes and Javed Hashmi, of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) party, bagged 31 votes.

Sharif required 172 votes in the 342-member National Assembly. Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N) won 186 seats in the May 11 general elections and he also received support from other parties and independent members.

Several parties, including the Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM), Jamait ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F), and Jamaat-e-Islami, voted for him.

Following the election, Sharif addressed the members of the National Assembly briefly.

He will be sworn in later in the evening by President Asif Ali Zardari.

Sources say that some members of the cabinet are likely to take oath shortly after Sharif’s oath-taking ceremony.

Sharif becomes Pakistan’s first ever leader to serve as prime minister for the third time following the victory of his Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N) in the May 11 general elections.

He has already served as prime minister for two non-consecutive terms — the first from Nov 1, 1990 to July 18, 1993 and the second from Feb 17, 1997 to Oct 12, 1999.

Nawaz Sharif was sent into exile in 2000 by then military ruler Pervez Musharraf following the dismissal of his elected government in October 1999.

One of the main tasks of Sharif’s government will be presentation of the new budget in the coming few days as Pakistan’s new financial year begins from July 1.

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