The Election Commission of Pakistan had announced the election schedule for the general election to be held on July 25, 2018. The National Assembly consists of 342 members, which are elected for a five-year term, on the basis of proportional representation.
Imran Khan scored what political analysts are calling the “Results of General Election”; winning the popular vote in all four of the country’s provinces. Security was heavy across Pakistan, as 75 million eligible voters gathered to cast their ballots, and 3118 candidates vied for 280 seats in the national parliament and assemblies of various provinces.
The winner was, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)! With a lead of 149 seats in the Provincial Assembly, Imran Khan’s PTI party is set to form government in the provinces of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab. In terms of votes polled, PMLN and MMA emerged as the runner’s up
Imran Khan’s PTI Party Won
Imran Khan, Pakistan’s most famous and polarizing cricket star-turned-politician, appears headed to victory in the country’s general election. Mr. Khan’s party led in a number of local tallies with about half the national vote counted in election 2018.
Voting in the country’s third consecutive transfer of power from one civilian government to another proceeded without major violence or reports of major manipulation. The elections may be called a success in that winners had been declared. But widespread allegations of pre-election manipulation of the news media, candidates and voters raised doubts about the fairness and credibility of the results.
The count was slow and confusing, with early projections based on partial returns quickly retracted by officials as results were challenged across the country. It was unclear when a final tally would be available. In short, uncertainty was everywhere on election night, with claims and counterclaims flying in all directions amid high emotions and low information.
Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was convicted of corruption. He had been unable to contest elections as a result of being in jail but his party had been able to win over 20% of the vote. The elections were the first held after the country’s Supreme Court disqualified Nawaz Sharif, the leader of PML-N and three-time prime minister, from holding public office. A number of major leadership changes were observed after the elections. Imran Khan’s PTI emerged as the single largest party in National Assembly, followed by Shahbaz Sharif’s PML-N. A record number of women were elected to parliament for the first time in Pakistan’s history.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf won the largest number of seats in the National Assembly but did not win a majority, to form the government PTI were supported by the independent candidates.
The PPP, led by former president Asif Zardari and his son Bilawal Bhutto, won 54 seats and moved into position as the main opposition party in Sindh.
The PML-N performed particularly poorly in Punjab – winning only 82 of the 342 general seats in the province where it had held 186 before the election.
Pakistan entered an uncharted political territory as it faced its third consecutive democratic transition of power, something unprecedented in Pakistan’s history. The elections were complicated but overall seemed to be fair and honest even if there were concerns about security and wealth influencing elections. The elections were seen as a victory for Pakistan’s democratic system and a blow to the country’s powerful military, which had ruled the nation for more than half its history.