What you need to know about election of prime minister!

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ISLAMABAD: Today, Pakistan is electing its 18th Prime Minister after Nawaz Sharif was disqualified by the Supreme Court on 28th July in Panama case. Since the country’s inception 70 years ago not a single prime minister has been allowed to complete his tenure.

The election of Prime Minister or Leader of the House is conducted under Chapter IV of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business of National Assembly.

There are six candidates running for the slot. Shahid Khaqan Abbasi is the nominee from the ruling coalition and has the support of more than the required number of votes to get elected. The Opposition parties, however, could not decide on a joint candidate and five MNAs submitted nomination papers.

Election process:

  • Nomination papers
  • Scrutiny
  • Withdrawal of nomination
  • Poll
  • President to be informed (oath taking ceremony)

Issuance and submission of nomination papers:

  1. After the election of the Speaker and the Deputy Speaker following a general election or whenever the office of the Prime Minister falls vacant for any reason, the Assembly shall, to the exclusion of any other business, proceed to elect without debate one of its Muslim members to be the Prime Minister.
  2. Any member may propose or second the name of any Muslim member for election as Prime Minister, hereinafter referred to as the candidate.
  3. Every proposal shall be made on a separate nomination paper in the form set out in the First Schedule and shall be signed by the proposer and seconder and also by the candidate stating that he has consented to the nomination.
  4. A candidate may be nominated by more than one nomination paper, but no member shall subscribe to more than one nomination paper, either as proposer or as seconder.
  5. Every nomination paper shall be delivered by the candidate or his proposer or seconder to the Secretary by 2.00 P.M. on the day preceding the day on which the election of Prime Minister is to be held.

Scrutiny:

  1. The Speaker shall, in the presence of the candidates or their proposers or seconders who may wish to be present, scrutinize the nomination paper and may reject a nomination paper if he is not satisfied.
  2. The Speaker shall endorse on each nomination paper his decision accepting or rejecting it and shall, in case of rejection, record briefly the reasons therefore.
  3. The decision of the Speaker accepting or rejecting a nomination paper shall be final.

Withdrawal:

A candidate may withdraw his candidature at any time before the [election] takes place.

Poll:

  1. Before commencement of the poll, the Speaker shall read out to the Assembly the names of the validly nominated candidates who have not withdrawn, hereinafter referred to as the contesting candidates, in the order in which their nomination papers were received and proceeded to hold the poll in accordance with the procedure set out in the Second Schedule.
  2. If there is only one contesting candidate and he secures the votes of the majority of the total membership of the Assembly, the Speaker shall declare him to have been elected.
  3. If there is only one contesting candidate and he fails to secure the votes of the majority of the total membership of the Assembly, all proceedings shall commence afresh.
  4. If there are two or more contesting candidates and if no contesting candidate secures such majority in the first poll, a second poll shall be held between the candidates who secure the two highest numbers of votes in the first poll and the candidate who secures a majority of votes of the members present and voting shall be declared to have been elected as Prime Minister: Provided that, if the number of votes secured by two or more candidates securing the highest number of votes is equal, further poll shall be held between them until one of them secures a majority of the votes of the members present and voting.

Procedure for vote of confidence in the Prime Minister

Whenever the Prime Minister has to obtain a vote of confidence under clause (7) of Article 91, voting shall be recorded in accordance with the procedure set out in the Second Schedule.

President to be informed

After the Prime Minister has been elected or a resolution for a vote of confidence under rule 36 has been passed or rejected, as the case may be, or a resolution of no-confidence under rule 37 has been passed, the Speaker shall forthwith intimate the result in writing to the President and the Secretary shall cause a notification to be published in the Gazette.

 

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