March 22, 2018

Sharif daughter seeks 'people's verdict' in Pakistan poll

17 September 2017, 10:10 | Opal Carroll

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While addressing a women convention in Lahore, Maryam Nawaz, reiterated that Sharif was disqualified because he did not take income from his son.

The by-election for a National Assembly seat in Lahore, that fell vacant with Sharif becoming ineligible to remain a legislator, has brought in the open the split in the party between his daughter, Maryum, and his younger brother, Shahbaz Sharif, who is now the CM of Punjab.

Polls predict a PML-N victory, but it is not clear whether its margin will increase.

The by-election on the seat left vacant after Sharif's disqualification by the Supreme Court, will be held on 17 September. "Some 30,000 voters will be polling their votes on biometric machines", Dawn reported.

PML-N veterans loyal to Shahbaz had privately said that it was just impossible that elder Sharif would bring his younger brother as PM.

PTI supporters say the Sharif family statements about a conspiracy are undermining political accountability.

While the ruling party fielded Kulsoom ─ the former prime minister's wife ─ Dr Yasmin Rashid contested the election for PTI.

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The election is being contested by all the major parties as well as two new Islamist opposition parties. "In our area, work only gets done if you go through [the PML-N's] workers". "This is a way for the people to show whether they still stand with the PML-N after the verdict".

Some PML-N circles believe the political environment is not conducive for Sharif's return and hence, he has been advised to stay in London for some time.

Among the candidates are Jama'at-i-Islami's (JI) Ziaur Rehman Ansari and the newly formed Milli Muslim League's independent candidate, Sheikh Mohammad Yaqoob.

The Election Commission had stopped him from displaying Saeed's picture on his banners and posters.

The prime minister was received at the airport by Pakistan's High Commissioner in UK Ibne Abbas together with officials of the embassy.

She insists that she doesn't know "what the future holds" and that she is "very happy working as a PML-N worker" but she is credited with having pushed forward a number of liberal policies in the party, and has always been seen as her father's political heir.

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