Saturday, April 13, 2024

Imran Khan and allies nominate Mahmood Khan Achakzai as presidential candidate

Imran Khan has reportedly nominated Pashtun-khwa Milli Awami Party (PKMAP) Chief Mahmood Khan Achakzai as the opposition’s presidential candidate against Asif Ali Zardari, the joint nominee of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and the Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP).

According to local media reports, the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) backed by Imran Khan’s PTI, on Saturday, named the Pashtun¬khwa Milli Awami Party chief as their joint candidate in the upcoming presidential elections, scheduled to take place on March 9.

Ex-Prime Minister Imran Khan, who remains incarcerated in Rawalpindi’s Adiala jail, has urged PTI’s lawmakers to support Achakzai.

Achakzai won the seat from the NA-266 constituency in Balochistan’s Kila Abdullah-cum-Chaman in the recently held general elections, marred with irregularities and allegations of rigging.

PTI Chairman Barrister Gohar Khan has confirmed the nomination of Mr Achakzai for the presidential election.

Earlier this week, a PTI delegation, led by party leader Asad Qaiser, met with Mr Achakzai and Balochistan National Party (Mengal) chief Akhtar Mengal to form an action committee for raising voice against “rigging” in the general elections held last month.

It was during the meeting; that Mr. Achakzai expressed his willingness to collaborate with every group that works towards the strengthening of the constitution and the Parliament.

Notably, all Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)-backed candidates, who were barred from using the electoral symbol ‘bat’ and contesting under the PTI banner on February 8, have now joined SIC.

As per Pakistani law, the president is elected by members of the National Assembly, Senate and four provincial assemblies.

Chief Justices of the High Courts act as the presiding officers for presidential elections. Justice Amer Farooq has been appointed as the presiding officer for the upcoming election.

The nomination of Mr Zardari for the presidential elections will be submitted on Saturday.

Mr Zardari was jointly nominated for the position after the PML-N and the PPP decided to form the coalition when both of the parties failed to secure a clear majority in the February 8 polls.

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