Pakistan’s election commission on Tuesday withheld the victory notifications of Imran Khan from two of the five constituencies from where he contested in the July 25 general elections, possibly jeopardising his plans to be sworn-in as the new prime minister.
In other three constituencies, notifications of Imran Khan’s victory have been issued but will be subject to the decision of the Election Commission of Pakistan or ECP in the pending case of violation of the election code of conduct, media reports said.
The 65-year-old Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman, set to become Pakistan’s next prime minister after being nominated by his party, had contested and won from five constituencies. The ECP has withheld victory notifications of Mr Khan from NA-53 (Islamabad-II) and NA-131 (Lahore-IX) constituencies. From NA-53, Mr Khan had defeated former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi. The PTI chief had received 92,891 votes while the PML-N leader managed to get 44,314 votes. However, the notification of Mr Khan’s success has been withheld as a case pertaining to violation to ECP’s code of conduct is being heard against him. The toughest competition to Mr Khan came from Lahore constituency NA-131 where he was up against Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leader Khawaja Saad Rafique. The notification for NA-131 success was withheld as the Lahore High Court has reserved its verdict on former railways minister’s plea for recounting of votes in the constituency, Geo News reported. The notifications issued for his wins in NA-35 (Bannu), NA-95 (Mianwali-I) and NA-243 (Karachi East-II), however, will be subject to the ECP’s final decision in pending cases pertaining to violation of its code of conduct.
Earlier, some media outlets reported that the electoral body has withheld results from all five constituencies Khan won. However, it was later clarified that the ECP held back notifications of only two constituencies, The News reported. The ECP move comes a day after the former cricket hero was formally nominated as its candidate by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) for the slot of prime minister. He is expected to take oath for the post on August 14 or 15. The ECP has conditionally notified results of three seats won by Mr Khan, The News reported. Notification of victory from Islamabad was withheld for a case related to violation of election code of conduct against Mr Khan.
The PTI chairman was issued a notice by the ECP for casting his ballot in front of cameras on July 25, in direct violation of the electoral body’s code of conduct. While in NA-131, the result was not notified by the ECP due to a case pending in the Lahore High Court. The ECP’s decision to withhold the results has jeopardised holding of election for next prime minister of the country, The News said. The results of 14 other constituencies have not been specified for various reasons, Dawn news reported.
On July 29, the ECP announced unofficial results of all 841 national and provincial assembly seats up for grabs in the 2018 general elections. A total of 270 National Assembly (NA) and 571 Provincial Assembly seats together comprised the total number.