Pakistan election: Imran Khan loyalists ahead at halfway mark

Though the ex-prime minister and PTI were banned, many of its candidates stood as independents

Pakistan election: Khan loyalists ahead at halfway point (photo: DW)
Pakistan election: Khan loyalists ahead at halfway point (photo: DW)
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  • Several hours after polls closed, the electoral commission has yet to announce a result

  • Candidates linked to former PM Imran Khan appear to have the edge over ex-premier Nawaz Sharif's party

  • Khan, who is in jail, was barred from running and many of his party's candidates ran as independents

  • Key issues included the economic crisis, security issues and the power of the military

Khan loyalists ahead at half-way point: election body

Candidates supporting former prime minister Imran Khan have won the most seats in Pakistan's assembly election with just over half the constituencies reporting, according to the country's election commission.

The body said candidates linked to Khan's PakistanTehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party had so far secured 48 seats.

The PTI candidates ran as independents as both the party and Khan, who is in jail, were barred from running.

Broadcaster GEO News has projected that Khan's independents have so far won 74 seats.

Candidates from former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party have taken 42 seats.

The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) of Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the son of assassinated premier Benazir Bhutto, also got 34.

Former PM Imran Khan's supporters lead in first results: media

Supporters of jailed former Prime Minister Imran Khan have the edge in results from over 100 seats, local media projected.

Geo News said independents, who mostly owe allegiance to Khan, had won 47 of 106 seats for which it had results.

By 1 p.m. local time (0800 GMT) Friday, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had announced 70 official results, with independents getting 24.

Khan is in jail and his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party was barred from the election, so his supporters contested as independents.

The Pakistan Peoples Party of Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the son of assassinated premier Benazir Bhutto, also got 24.

Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), which is backed by the powerful military, has so far won 18.

A total of 265 seats were contested in Thursday's election.

Analysts have predicted there may be no clear winner.

Karachi stock market drops over election uncertainty

The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) plunged more than 2,000 points due to uncertainty surrounding the election results.

The KSE-100 shares index dropped 3.34% at one point, below the 62,000 mark.

By lunchtime, the index had recovered somewhat but was still nearly 1.76% down.

Ex-PM Sharif set to win Lahore seat — media

Former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will win the Lahore seat in the country's national election, according to projections by broadcaster Geo News.

Early results showed his Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz party (PML-N) had the lead. The party also has the backing of the country's powerful military.


Sharif is the longest-serving prime minister of Pakistan, having served a total of more than 9 years across three tenures. Each term ended in his ousting.

Sharif is one of Pakistan's richest men, with an estimated net worth of $31 million (€29 million) in 2021.

The 74-year-old returned from exile in London last October to participate in the election.

UN chief urges calm after election day violence


United Nations chief Antonio Guterres has expressed concern over violence in Pakistan and the suspension of mobile phone services on election day.

'As Pakistan awaits the results of the elections, the (UN) Secretary General encourages all political leaders and society segments to maintain a calm atmosphere, as well as refrain from the use of violence and any actions that could increase tensions,' the UN Secretary General's spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said in an emailed statement.

"It is important for all candidates and supporters to ensure that human rights and the rule of law are fully respected in the interest of the Pakistani people and (to) resolve any disputes that might arise through established legal procedures," the spokesperson added.

Thursday's vote was marred by militant attacks and the suspension of mobile phone services.

Phone networks cut services early Thursday (8 February) but they were being partially restored late into the night, the Interior Ministry said late on Thursday.

The Ministry cited security reasons for the suspension, which was also condemned by rights groups such as Amnesty International.

Sharif in early lead, but Khan allies exceed expectations

Former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) (PML-N) party was leading the polls, winning four of the eight parliamentary seat results declared early on Friday (9 February).

Bilawal Bhutto Zardari's Pakistan People's Party secured one seat, while independents claimed the remaining three.


Independent candidates linked to jailed former prime minister Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, the winners of the last election, are outperforming expectations by leading in many constituencies, the AFP news agency reported, citing local news reports.

Khan's party has been barred from participating in the election as a bloc, but individuals endorsed by his party entered the race as independent candidates.

The main competition is expected between the candidates supported by imprisoned Khan's PTI party and Sharif's PML-N, reportedly backed by the military.

Pakistan counts votes, electoral commission demands results

Pakistan's vote count following their national election on Thursday (8 February) was marred by delays, leading the Election Commission of Pakistan on Friday morning to order returning officers to speed up the release of results.

By 3 a.m. local time (2200 GMT, Thursday), more than 10 hours after polls closed, only four provincial assembly results had been announced.

The delay has been blamed on "internet problems" after the closure by authorities of internet and phone access during the day.

The Interior Ministry said communications outages were "to maintain law and order" after two explosions on Wednesday (7 February) by the Islamic State killed 28 people.

Pakistan election day marred by violence and confusion

Pakistani voters went to the election polls on Thursday, but the day was marred by violence and the suspension of communication services.

Mobile phone services across Pakistan were suspended during polling hours, with the Interior Ministry citing the need to "maintain law and order." In a statement, a ministry spokesman said, "It has been decided to temporarily suspend the mobile service across the country."


Supporters of jailed ex-Prime Minister Imran Khan told DW that the authorities shutting down internet and phone access was a ploy to dissuade them from voting for him — a claim Pakistan’s caretaker government denied.

Pakistani voters showed themselves undeterred by very cold weather in several parts of the country, even while the threat of violence is highlighted by the tens of thousands of troops deployed across the country. However, pollsters predicted a low turnout from the country's 128 million eligible voters.

Highlighting the risks of voting, at least 12 people, mostly security officials, were killed in numerous militant attacks aiming to disrupt the elections, the Pakistani military said. The attacks occurred in at least 51 places in Pakistan’s volatile southwestern and northwestern regions that border Afghanistan and Iran, a statement said.

Pakistani voters showed themselves undeterred by very cold weather in several parts of the country, even while the threat of violence is highlighted by the tens of thousands of troops deployed across the country. However, pollsters predicted a low turnout from the country's 128 million eligible voters.

Highlighting the risks of voting, at least 12 people, mostly security officials, were killed in numerous militant attacks aiming to disrupt the elections, the Pakistani military said. The attacks occurred in at least 51 places in Pakistan’s volatile southwestern and northwestern regions that border Afghanistan and Iran, a statement said.

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Published: 09 Feb 2024, 8:07 AM
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