ISLAMABAD: All eyes are on the Senate election for the chairman and deputy chairman slots scheduled for tomorrow (Friday).
The government’s nominee, Sadiq Sanjrani, the incumbent Senate chairman vying for a second term, and Pakistan Democratic Movement’s Yousaf Raza Gillani, a former prime minister, are contesting the Senate chairman seat.
On Wednesday, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had notified the victory of newly elected senators to the Upper House of Parliament following the March 3 Senate polls.
“In pursuance of Section 124 of the Elections Act, 2017, and all other powers enabling it in that behalf, the Election Commission hereby publishes the names of the following candidates returned to the Senate of Pakistan […] in place of the members whose terms will expire on 11th March 2021 under clause (3) of Article 59 of the Constitution,” read the separate notifications, which then went on to list candidates that had won the various seat categories in Islamabad and the four provinces.
Previously, the commission rejected pleas, urging it to withhold victory notifications of Faisal Vawda and Gillani over a dual nationality controversy.
The commission rejected the PTI’s petition to hold back Gillani’s Senate victory notification. The commission will, however, take it up for hearing and fixed March 22 for a hearing on the video scandal against Ali Haider Gillani, son of Yousaf Raza Gilani, and issued notices to all the parties to the case.
The ECP said no precedent of stopping the victory notification is available.
In all, 48 senators have been elected to replace outgoing lawmakers. From Islamabad, two senators were elected — PPP’s Gillani to the general seat and PTI’s Fawzia’s Arshad to the women’s seat.
From Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 12 senators were notified — seven senators were appointed to general seats, two to technocrat seats, including Ulema, two to seats for women, and one to the seat reserved for non-Muslims.
From Punjab, 11 senators were inducted to the Upper House — seven to general seats, two to technocrat seats, including Ulema, and two to women seats.
From Balochistan, 12 senators have been notified — seven to general seats, two to technocrats, including Ulema, two to women seats, and one to a seat reserved for non-Muslims.
From Sindh, 11 senators have officially been notified — seven to general seats, two to technocrats including Ulema, and two to women seats.
A day earlier, Prime Minister Imran Khan held a meeting with PTI coalition party leaders.
It was attended by Minister for Defence Production Zubaida Jalal and MNA Khalid Maqbool Siddique, among others.
According to a statement issued by the PM Office, the current political situation in the country and coalition issues were discussed during the meeting.
The ruling coalition parties expressed full confidence in the leadership of PM Khan.
Affirming full support for the PM’s decision on the chairman and deputy chairman nominations, the allied party leaders also expressed their commitment to fully support PM Khan’s vision for the betterment of the country.
According to sources, PM Imran has summoned the PTI and allied senators to PM House today as well.
A meeting of senators chaired by the premier will take decisions after consultations, the sources said.
He will take the party and allies into confidence regarding the nomination of the deputy chairman.