Friday, April 23

Pakistan Oppn to approach court challenging PTI’s candidate win in Senate elections

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A day after rejecting the victory of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) candidate Sadiq Sanjrani as the new chairman of the Senate, Pakistan Opposition parties will approach the court on Saturday to challenge his election, reported Dawn.
“I have consulted the PDM (Pakistan Democratic Movement) leadership, including Maryam Nawaz and Maulana Fazlur Rehman, and have decided to challenge the election of Senate chairman,” said Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman.

“In this particular case, our candidate Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani has received 49 votes, and government candidate Sadiq Sanjrani got 48. Thus we have won the election of Senate chairman,” he said, adding that the intention of the voters (whose votes were rejected) was clear.

“These seven votes were rejected illegally and, therefore, Gilani won the poll. It is an open and shut case and, therefore, we are moving the court,” he added.

According to The Express Tribune, Sanjrani received 48 votes while his opponent Gilani could only manage 42, in which seven votes were rejected.

The votes were rejected by the presiding officer, Syed Muzafar Hussain Shah, as the ballot papers were stamped on the candidate’s name instead of the box next to it.

“These seven ballot papers are rejected. One vote was rendered invalid as it was cast in favour of both the candidates,” Shah said.

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) vice president Maryam Nawaz said Yousuf Raza Gilani must be congratulated for his victory now or later. In a tweet, she said, “Congratulated Gilani for defeating the government’s candidate.”

In a statement, Awami National Party (ANP) President Asfandyar Wali Khan rejected the result of the election for the Senate chairman and termed it the darkest day for democracy in the country.

“Having a clear majority in the upper house, the defeat of Yousuf Raza Gilani would promote undemocratic values in the country,” Dawn quoted Wali Khan as saying.

He alleged that the government had used all illegal tactics to snatch the chairmanship of the upper house of parliament from the opposition PDM.

“Installation of secret cameras at the polling booth is also a condemnable act that made the whole process controversial,” he added.