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President Arif Alvi given farewell guard of honour

President Arif Alvi given farewell guard of honour

ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi was presented with a farewell guard of honour on Friday, marking the culmination of his term as the 13th head of state, while Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari is poised to become the new president with the support of the allied parties in tomorrow’s election.

Alvi was sworn in on September 9, 2018, as the president and his term ended last year but due to the absence of the electoral college for the election of president, he continued to serve in the presidency.
Today, a smartly turned-out contingent of the armed forces presented a guard of honour to the outgoing president.

The national anthem was played as the president stood at the saluting dais.

Later, he also shook hands with the officers and staffers of the Aiwan-e-Sadr.

The farewell guard of honour was given a day before the next presidential election scheduled to be held on Saturday.

Zardari to win presidential polls
As the presidential elections are scheduled to be held on Saturday (March 9), the ruling coalition has calculated that its candidate Asif Ali Zardari would get more than 400 electoral votes.

The ruling alliance has pitched former president and Pakistan Peoples Party Parliamentarians (PPP-P) President Zardari against Pakhtoonkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP) Chairman Mahmood Khan Achakzai, who is backed by Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC), for the president’s slot.

The members of the Senate and National Assembly would exercise their right to vote by secret ballot in the Parliament House while polling for the presidential elections would also be held in the four provincial assemblies.

As many as 325 members of the National Assembly, 91 senators, 354 members of the Punjab Assembly, 157 members of the Sindh Assembly, 117 members of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly and 65 members of the Balochistan Assembly would cast their vote.

The ruling coalition parties, the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q), Istehkam-e-Pakistan Party (IPP), National Party (NP), Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) and Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) have declared their support for Zardari while Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) backed SIC and Majlis Wahdat-e-Muslimeen have assured their support to Achakzai.

Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F), Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) and Akhtar Mengal of Balochistan National Party (BNP-M) have announced they will abstain from voting in the presidential elections.

Parliamentary sources have reviewed the party position in the National Assembly, Senate and four provincial assemblies, and how many votes each presidential candidate is likely to get.

Zardari is likely to get more or less 202 votes from the National Assembly — the number secured by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in his election — PML-N’s 108 votes, PPP’s 67 votes, MQM-P’s 22, PML-Q’s five, IPP’s four, and one vote of NP.

Achakzai is expected to get 92 votes from the SIC and independent candidates, and one vote each from the PkMAP and Majlis Wahdat al-Muslimeen, making it 94 votes.

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