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PPP or PML-N: Who will grab the Senate top office?

PPP or PML-N: Who will grab the Senate top office?

Pakistani lawmakers on Saturday began casting votes in secret for new senators in parliament's upper house in an election that looks set to boost the ruling party, as it tries to revive the political fortunes of ousted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Independent candidates won 10 seats, including six from Balochistan and four from tribal regions.

Those candidates, who will be running as 'independents, are expected to pledge their allegiance to the PML-N if they are elected to the senate, PML-N party officials say.

PML-N won 15 seats including 11 from Punjab and two each from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and federal capital territory.

Among the smaller parties, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazal, National Party and Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami party each won two seats, Jamati-e-Islami, Muthahida Qaumi Movement and Pakistan Muslim League Functional each got one seat.

Each provincial assembly will elect seven senators on general seats, two on technocrat seats and two on women seats for a total of 11 seats, while Sindh and Punjab will additionally elect a minority member each.

PPP's Dr Abdul Qayyum Soomro (left) and Faisal Karim Kundi (right) reached Quetta here on Sunday, March 4, 2018, to convince the newly elected independent Senators to form an alliance with their party.

Given equal representation to provinces in the upper house, it is rightly considered a symbol of federation and indeed the house has also played very significant role in legislation and other matters of national importance.

There were 65 independent candidates including 23 from the PML-N.

The PML-N has not spoken about amending the constitution, but it has been on a collision course with the judiciary since the Supreme Court ousted Sharif from power. Successful PPP candidates on general seats from Sindh include sitting chairman of Senate Raza Rabbani, Maula Bux Chandio, Mohammad Ali Shah Jamote, Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar and Dr Sikander Menghro.

Meanwhile, the State Minister for Information Marriyum Aurangzeb talking to media in Islamabad congratulated the whole Country as the Senate Elections were held in time, adding there had been the stage over which many predictions and analysis were made that the Senate Elections would not be held in time.

Imran Khan had said his party would work to introduce direct elections for senators to root out corruption and use of money.

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