Nawaz Sharif invites rival parties to join hands to form coalition govt after he fails to win majority

Business Today Desk

In a significant political development, former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has called upon rival parties to come together and form a unity government in Pakistan. This appeal comes in the wake of a general election that did not yield a clear majority for any single party, leaving Pakistan on the brink of a hung parliament. 

The independent candidates, many of whom are backed by the incarcerated ex-premier Imran Khan’s party, have notably secured a surprising 92 out of the 224 seats for which results have been declared so far.

Nawaz Sharif, addressing his supporters at the PML-N central secretariat in Lahore, emphasized the need for harmony and stability, stating that Pakistan cannot afford internal strife and requires at least a decade of stability for the welfare of its citizens.

 He expressed his desire to foster friendly relations with neighboring countries and tasked his brother, Shehbaz Sharif, to initiate talks with leaders from other parties such as the PPP’s Asif Ali Zardari and JUI-F’s Fazlur Rehman for coalition formation.

The election, held on February 9, was marred by allegations of rigging, violence, and a countrywide mobile phone shutdown. Despite these challenges, Sharif’s PML-N emerged as the single largest party, though still short of the 169 seats needed for a simple majority in the 336-seat assembly. 

As per the most recent data from the Election Commission, results have been declared for 224 out of 265 constituencies. Independent candidates, largely backed by PTI, secured 92 seats, while PML-N and PPP won 63 and 50 seats, respectively. Smaller parties clinched 19 seats.
For the formation of a government, a party needs to secure 133 seats out of the 265 in the National Assembly. The requirement for a simple majority, considering the total of 336 seats, including reserved slots for women and minorities, is 169.
Vote counting is still ongoing after Thursday’s general election, which faced allegations of rigging, sporadic violence, and a nationwide mobile phone shutdown.

“We can’t hold elections again and again,” he said. “We were all sitting together yesterday but didn’t address you because the results were not in.”

“Our party has emerged as single largest winning party in the country after Thursday’s polls. To steer Pakistan out of crises, we want other parties to join hands to form a coalition government,” said Sharif, the three-time former premier. “Our agenda is only a happy Pakistan and you know what we have done before.”

In an address without explicitly mentioning Imran Khan, Sharif stated, “Those inclined towards conflict, I want to convey that Pakistan cannot bear the brunt of such hostilities. Pakistan requires a decade of stability as it concerns the lives of its citizens.”

He also expressed his intention to foster friendly relations with neighboring countries.

With inputs from PTI

Also Read: ‘Wait for bigger decisions in my third term’: PM Modi sets tone for 2024 elections

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