Punjab makes history by electing first woman chief minister

Maryam Nawaz of PML-N gets 220 votes while opposition Sunni Ittehad Council members walk out and then boycott session.

LAHORE: Punjab Assembly on Monday elected Maryam Nawaz of the PML-N as the chief minister, becoming the first province in Pakistan to have a woman chief executive.

The session was however boycotted by PTI-backed members who have joined the Sunni Ittehad Council.

Maryam obtained 220 votes while Sunni Ittehad Council candidate Aftab led the boycott of the opposition. The voting was done through raising hands.

Addressing the house after her election, Maryam thanked the members for reposing trust in her and expressed the hope that the speaker and his deputy would run the house in accordance with democratic norms.

She regretted that the opposition members did not take part in the democratic process. She said the PML-N had also gone through a very difficult time but it continued its democratic struggle.

Earlier, Rana Aftab alleged rigging in the general elections and claimed that even after rigging his party had majority in the assembly. He claimed that had the voting been done through secret balloting he would have become the chief minister.

Earlier, the session of the assembly started with new Speaker Malik Muhammad Ahmed Khan in the chair. The speaker told the members about the agenda of the house that was to elect the chief minister. He said agter a few minutes the doors of the hall would be closed and the process for the election of the chief minister would start.

However, members of the Sunni Ittehad Council stood on their seats and started chanting slogans and thumping desks. The speaker told them that he would proceed in accordance with the law and there was no use of any attempt to disrupt the proceedings because none of their words would become part in of the proceedings. 

Soon afterwards, all the members of the Sunni Ittehad Council walked out. The speaker to asked some members of the PML-N to persuade snd bring back the Sunni Ittehad Council members, but the latter refused and turned their walkout into boycott.

Takes oath

Maryam Nawaz Sharif later took oath at a ceremony at the sprawling lawns of the Governor’s House.
Governor Punjab Muhammad Balighur Rehman administered the oath to the chief minister .
PML-N Quaid Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and uncle Prime Minister-designate Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif were among the participants.

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