The Pakistan People’s Party has nominated Yousuf Raza Gillani as its candidate for the opposition leader of the Senate.

Gillani’s formal nomination by the PPP marks a decisive crack within the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM)’s ranks. A joint candidate of the PDM in the Senate chairman elections, Gillani will now reportedly contest against Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N)’s nominee Azam Nazeer Tarar for the opposition leader’s seat.

The PPP has formally lodged its protest with the PML-N leadership over Tarar’s nomination due to him being a lawyer for the accused police officials in the Benazir Bhutto murder case.

Tarar currently has the support of 17 PML-N senators, as well as five senators of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI-F) and two members each of the National Party (NP) and the Pakhtun­khwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP). The PPP candidate has support of the party’s 21 senators, as well two senators from the Awami National Party (ANP) and the lone member of the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI).

The votes of two senators of the Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M) have now become decisive in determining the opposition leader seat.

Under Rule 16 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Senate 2012, the Senate chairman is required to nominate the opposition leader by Saturday.


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