The independent candidates, backed by the party of former Prime Minister Imran Khanw, won the most seats in the elections held on February 8. Of the 265 seats elected so far to represent the National Assembly of Pakistan, the independent group led by Khan won 96 seats.
If they were not given the last 29 seats, the independents established themselves as the first political force, although they did not have enough options to govern with a majority. Moreover, not all its candidates support Khan. The party leading the independents is Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, or Pakistan Justice Movement (PTI), which already had the majority in 2018 with 158 seats.
In the second position is the Pakistan Muslim League, where the three-time Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is in the lead with 66 seats won and, behind, the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) with 51.
Pakistan is a constitutional democratic parliamentary republic, so in these elections, a party must win a majority of 133 seats to form a government. Although the National Assembly of Pakistan has 266 seats, during elections, the Election Commission of Pakistan suspends a constituency.
Nawaz Sharif wants to change the mandate
Shortly after the end of the review that will face the country’s representatives for the next five years, Nawaz Sharif invited the formation of a coalition government together with the main forces to prevent the alternative party from getting the possibility to reach the executive.
Sharif further indicated that he will hand over his mandate to his brother and former prime minister, Shehbaz Sharif if this means the participation of other parties in the alleged coalition government. For its part, the PTI reports changes in results in some electoral districts to benefit Sharif’s formation.
The result in favor of PTI is an unexpected scenario for these elections because its leader, and until 2022, Prime Minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan, was excluded from the election race, accused of more than one hundred criminal charges and three judicial convictions for being 14 years old, hiding him behind bars.
In addition, the Supreme Court dissolved the party a month before the election of its symbols and identity, forcing them to present their candidates as independents along with hundreds of others registered in the electoral lists. Shariff and Khan’s parties declared themselves the winners of the election, increasing political unrest in the country.
The political instability created by the absence of a clear winner is a problem that is increasing in the country’s economic crisis.