Zardari Re-elected as Pakistan's President
Zardari Re-elected as Pakistan’s President

Asif Ali Zardari, the co-chairperson of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), secured his second term as Pakistan’s 14th President after a successful election on Saturday. At 68 years old, Zardari emerged victorious with 255 votes, defeating his opponent Mahmood Khan Achakzai, who garnered 119 votes in both the National Assembly and the Senate. Zardari’s candidacy was jointly supported by the PPP and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), while Achakzai, aged 75, represented the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC).

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The electoral process involved members of the newly elected National Assembly and the four provincial assemblies, as mandated by the Constitution. Zardari’s stronghold in the Sindh Assembly ensured a significant portion of votes, and he also secured a clean sweep in the Balochistan Assembly. Additionally, he surpassed Achakzai in the Punjab Assembly. However, in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa assembly, where SIC/PTI holds sway, Achakzai received the majority of votes.

Zardari, a former businessman turned politician and the widower of slain Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, will succeed Dr. Arif Alvi, who completed his five-year term the previous year. Notably, Zardari’s reelection marks a historic milestone as the first civilian to serve as president for a second term. His inauguration is scheduled for the following day, Sunday.

Meanwhile, Achakzai, the leader of the Pashtoonkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP), campaigned under the banner of the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC), which gained traction with the support of independent candidates associated with Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

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