Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) has rejected the result of Senate chairman election after their candidate Yousuf Raza Gilani lost the closely-contested battle against the ruling coalition’s Sadiq Sanjrani on Friday.
As many as 98 senators from the upper house exercised their right to vote. PTI-backed candidate Sanjrani received 48 votes while his opponent Gilani could only manage 42.
Seven votes were rejected.
Addressing a press conference after the announcement of the result, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Ahsan Iqbal claimed that Gilani in fact bagged 49 votes, not 42, adding the seven rejected votes.
He said that the senators who had stamped on the name of the candidate on the ballot paper cannot be considered rejected and should be counted as Gilani’s votes.
Iqbal said that there are Supreme Court and high court decisions regarding voting as well as ruling from the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP). “The vote cast inside the box is valid even if it is over the name [of the candidate],” he said.
Former prime minister and PPP leader Raja Pervaiz Ashraf also declared Gilani the winner, saying that the government-backed candidate was defeated despite all the efforts from the government. “Today the parliament was insulted. Chairman Senate has been selected artificially today,” he added.
He said that if Sanjrani was a true democratic person, he would have refused to take up the position. Ashraf further said that the government’s days were numbered and soon the PDM would send it packing.
Qasim Gilani, son of Yousuf Raza Gilani, announced on the occasion that they will challenge today’s result in Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).
“They rejected seven votes because they knew they would lose. We will challenge the results in the election commission,” he maintained.
PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz, taking to Twitter, congratulated Gilani for his “victory” which would be announced “sooner or later”.