Head of the State: Dr. Arif Alvi
So the wait is over and the news is that lawmakers of Pakistan have elected Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Dr. Arif Alvi as the 13th President of Pakistan after the vote count ended at around 5 pm today, September 4, 2018. The polling process was held through secret ballot.
A dentist by profession, 69-year-old Alvi is one of the founding members of PTI. He served as the party’s Secretary General from 2006 to 2013, and now he is the Head of the State Pakistan.
Crumbling Opposition Paved the Way
After the results of General Elections 2018, MMA and ANP declared that they would boycott parliament and provincial assemblies to form a ‘solid’ opposition and with continuous efforts of PML-N and the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) managed to ‘convince’ the Muttahida Majlis Amal (MMA) not to boycott assemblies and to protest against the alleged foul play in the July 25 poll within democratic and constitutional norms. The PML-N President Shahbaz Sharif chaired that huddle.
After the coalition of the opposition, it was expected that the opposition will nominate a single candidate for the seat of the head of the state.
But surprisingly that did not happen and replicating the Prime Minister’s elections last month, the opposition parties led by the Pakistan People’s Party and the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) stuck to their own candidates Maulana Fazlur Rehman and Aitzaz Ahsan.
Aitzaz Ahsan or Maulana Fazalur Rehman: Opposition Splits Apart
There were a series of meetings before the two sides announced there had been no headway to agree on a joint candidate.
The joint opposition was to field a single candidate, however, several attempts to achieve the required goal ended in vain.
Moulana Fazlur Rehman, met PPP leader Asif Ali Zardari to convince him on the same ground and he claimed that he had tried to convince PML-N President Shahbaz Sharif and other allies to support Aitzaz Ahsan as desired by Zardari but none of them agreed.
Moulana appealed PPP to withdraw their nominee but Zardari and his party did not agree and remained unchanged with their decision.
PPP claimed Aitzaz Ahsan was the best candidate so all the parties must vote for him. After a marathon PPP meeting chaired by Zardari and Bilawal Bhutto Zardari it was decided that if the opposition parties wanted to remain united they must accept Aitzaz Ahsan as their candidate. Aitzaz Ahsan will be their pick.
PPP was still hopeful that PML-N will pull its candidate at the last minute to make it a one-on-one contest between the ruling Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf nominee Arif Alvi and Aitzaz Ahsan.
PML-N’s leadership said Moulana Fazlur Rehman had the support of more lawmakers than Aitzaz Ahsan so the PPP was morally bound to accept the cleric as the joint candidate of the opposition
The division among the opposition gave an upper hand to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s pick for the post of the President as he did not need more than even 50 percent of the votes.
430 votes were cast in the National Assembly and Senate. Arif Alvi the winning candidate secured 212 votes, Maulana Fazlur Rehman the nominee of the opposition received 131 votes and 81 votes were bagged by Aitzaz Ahsan the PP’s candidate.
The number of rejected votes are six.
Punjab Assembly- PTI wins
351 out of 354 parliamentarians cast their vote in Punjab assembly. 18 votes were rejected. Arif Alvi secured 33 (electoral votes) after 186 members cast their ballots in his favour.
Maulana Fazlur Rehman secured 25 (electoral votes) after 141 MPAs voted for him. PPP candidate Aitzaz Ahsan secured only one electoral vote from Punjab Assembly, after seven members cast ballots in favour of him.
Yawar Ali Chief who is the Justice of Lahore High Court presided over the polling process while election commissioner Punjab, Zafar Iqbal Hussain, performed duties as returning officer.
The first to cast vote in the Punjab Assembly was PTI’s Abdul Aleem Khan.
Sindh Assembly-Aitzaz Ahsan wins
158 members of the Sindh Assembly cast their vote in the presidential election with five lawmakers abstaining. Aitzaz Ahsan being the leader in this particular house received 100 votes, Arif Alvi bagged 56 votes and Fazlur Rehman received only one vote.
One vote was not counted (rejected) in the election.
Aitzaz received 39 votes and Alvi 22 votes, according to the electoral system.
Chief Justice of Sindh High Court Ahmed Ali Shaikh performed the duty of presiding officer.
KP Assembly-Arif Alvi wins
In the KPK Assembly, 111 out of 112 lawmakers cast their votes in the election.
Arif Alvi received 78 votes, Fazlur Rehman bagged 26 votes and Aitzaz Ahsan received 2 votes. The number of dismissed votes are two.
According to the electoral formula, Arif Alvi votes are 41 and 13 votes are bagged from Fazlur Rehman.
Waqar Ahmad Seth Chief Justice of Peshawar High Court supervised the polling process.
Balochistan Assembly-Arif Alvi wins
Arif Alvi leads the house with 45 votes and Fazlur Rehman received 15 votes in the provincial assembly. One lawmaker did not cast his vote in the election.
Syeda Tahira Safdar Chief Justice of Balochistan High Court acted as presiding officer.