On Tuesday, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, a loyalist of Nawaz Sharif, elected Prime Minister by Pakistan’s National Assembly. Abbasi will continue as the interim PM till Shehbaz Sharif is elected as a National Assembly member.
The special session of the National Assembly was called by President Mamnoon Hussain after the court disqualified Sharif in a landmark ruling in the Panama Papers case for not being honest while declaring his assets.
Abbasi, from the ruling PML-N party, got 221 votes in the 342-member National Assembly or lower house of Parliament.
After announcing the results amid sloganeering, the Speaker asked Abbasi to take the seat of the prime minister and address the House.
Abbasi, 58, used his maiden speech to declare Sharif “the prime minister of the people of Pakistan”. He said, “InshaAllah (God willing), one day the real prime minister of this country will come back and sit on this chair.” Referring to the 45-day time limit on a by-election for Sharif’s parliamentary seat, he added, “I may be here for 45 hours or 45 days. I am the prime minister and I am not here to keep the seat warm, I will do the work of 45 months in 45 days, if I remain here.”
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