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Mamnoon Hussain elected new president of Pakistan


Islamabad, July 31 (IANS) Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz's (PML-N) nominee Mamnoon Hussain was Tuesday elected as the 12th president of Pakistan.

He will assume the presidential office Sep 9, a day after incumbent President Asif Ali Zardari demits office following completion of his five-year tenure, Xinhua reported.

Tuesday's election, for largely a ceremonial post of the head of state, was a contest between Mamnoon Hussain, of PML-N, the ruling party of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, and Wajihuddin Ahmed, a candidate of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), the opposition party headed by cricketer-turned politician Imran Khan.

"Mamnoon Hussain has secured 432 votes whereas justice Wajihuddin (Ahmed) secures 77 votes, so Mr. Mamnoon has been elected as the 12th president of Pakistan," the Chief Election Commissioner, Fakhruddin G. Ibrahim, announced during a press conference here.

Earlier in the day, the presidential election kicked off at 10.00 a.m. and ended at 3.00 p.m.. 

A total of 887 members of the parliament house and four provincial assemblies had cast their votes, of which 878 votes were considered valid while nine were found invalid, the ECP said. 

Voters cast their ballots at the Paliament House in Islamabad and four provincial assemblies of Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

Meanwhile, the main opposition party Pakistan People's Party (PPP) and its three allies boycotted the elections as the country's Supreme Court, on a plea by the PML-N, had advanced the polling date Aug 6 to July 30. 

PPP complained of not having received adequate time to campaign for the election due to the changed date.

The PML-N had requested for the change in the presidential voting date, saying many lawmakers in the country would be in Saudi Arabia for a religious ritual during the last few days of Ramadan, which is likely to end in Pakistan around Aug 9, 2013. 

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