Published: Mon, July 31, 2017
Global | By Maureen Mccoy

Younger Sharif 'less charismatic' than brother

Younger Sharif 'less charismatic' than brother

Ousted Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has named his younger brother Shahbaz to replace him as the country's leader, after having been removed from office by the Supreme Court a day earlier for lying on a wealth declaration.

In the meantime the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), which enjoys a majority in parliament, has nominated former oil minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi as interim prime minister.

Since Mr. Shahbaz Sharif is now serving as Chief Minister of Punjab province, he will have to be elected on a National Assembly seat to get the slot of Prime Minister.

Shabaz has only served as a provincial political leader and will need to be elected to the National Assembly before becoming the new prime minister.

Nawaz Sharif resigned from the Prime Minister's office, roughly one year before the scheduled general elections.

The final nomination will be recognised in the party's parliamentary meeting.

The Election Commission of Pakistan shall issue a notification disqualifying respondent No. 1 Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif from being a Member of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) with immediate effect, whereafter he shall cease to be the Prime Minister of Pakistan.

The armed forces - which is Pakistan's most powerful and organized institution - has orchestrated coups in the past and controls the nuclear-armed nation's foreign policy.

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The quick handover looks to ease political upheaval sparked by the Supreme Court's decision on Friday to disqualify Sharif for concealing his assets.

Abbasi is an elected member of the National Assembly of Pakistan since 1988, representing Rawalpindi.

The ruling PML-N party has vowed a smooth transfer of power after Sharif's removal.

"In Nawaz Sharif, at least you had a politician who wanted to improve relations with India", said Mr Parthasarathy, adding the prospect of bilateral engagement was dim under a weak government in Islamabad.

"Some people urged me to resign, but I told them that it is not a bed of roses, but a bed of thorns that I am sitting on, and my conscience is telling me not to resign because I did nothing wrong", he said.

He was the chairman of national flag carrier Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) from 1997 to 1999, until General Pervez Musharraf overthrew Sharif´s second government. He was forced to step down during his first term as Prime Minister after a family-owned business, Ittefaq Industries, grew tremendously while he was in office.

No prime minister has completed a full term since independence from British colonial rule in 1947. Shehbaz will contest the election from NA-120, a constituency in Lahore which has fallen vacant due to the disqualification of Nawaz Sharif.

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