Shahbaz Sharif, the President of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, is expected to become Prime Minister after the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf government was voted out after losing a no-confidence motion in Parliament.
Imran Khan’s PTI was defeated in the no-confidence vote with 174 votes in favor of the motion.
On March 30, Pakistan Peoples Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari revealed Sharif’s candidacy as the opposition’s choice for prime ministership during a joint press conference of the opposition parties.
As a result of the Supreme Court’s rejection of the House’s Deputy Speaker’s no-confidence motion, Sharif is expected to be elected as Pakistan’s new prime minister during the same National Assembly session in which Imran Khan was ousted from power.
After a historic ruling by Pakistan’s Supreme Court on Thursday, it called for the National Assembly to convene “not later than 10:30 AM on Saturday” after overturning the Deputy Speaker Qasim Khan Suri’s April 3 ruling against the no-confidence motion on “constitutional grounds.”
This decision, which overturned all subsequent actions, including the dissolution of Parliament, was made after the Deputy Speaker’s decision was declared “contrary to the Constitution and law” and “of no legal effect.” The court also restored Prime Minister Imran Khan and all Federal Ministers to their positions as of April 3.
If Imran Khan is ousted as prime minister in a no-trust vote, a new PM must be elected in the same session in which Imran Khan lost the no-trust vote, as stipulated by the court.
He is the younger brother of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who has served three terms as leader of Pakistan.
In Pakistan, Shehbaz Sharif has served three terms as the Chief Minister of Punjab, a key province.
In August 2018, Shehbaz Sharif launched a bid to become Pakistan’s next prime minister after gaining a reputation as an administrator.
But PPP leader Bilawal Bhutto’s last-minute decision to abstain from the PM vote paved the way for PTI’s Imran Khan to easily win the election.
Afterward, Shehbaz Sharif was elected as the National Assembly’s Opposition Leader.
After graduating from Lahore’s Government College University in 1985, Shehbaz Sharif joined his family’s steel business and served as the president of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Zia-ul-dictatorship Haq’s in the 1980s saw the Sharif family’s political fortunes rise significantly. Nawaz Sharif, the elder brother, became Punjab’s Finance Minister in 1983.
He was elected to the National Assembly in 1990 after serving in the Punjab Provincial Assembly since 1988.
In 1993, he ran for a seat in the Punjab Provincial Assembly once more and won, this time as the leader of the opposition.
As a result of the 1997 elections, he rose to the position of Punjab’s Chief Minister for the first time.
Pervez Musharraf’s military coup of 1999 ended his term as Punjab’s CM, but he was re-elected in 2008 after a decade-long political exile.
As a result of his elder brother, former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, being removed from office due to his involvement in the ‘Panama Papers,’ Shehbaz Sharif was elected President of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz in February 2018.
Similarly to his elder brother, Shehbaz Sharif has been charged with high-level corruption.
A money laundering investigation by the National Accountability Bureau resulted in the freezing of 23 properties owned by Shehbaz Sharif and his son Hamza in December of 2019.
In the same case, he was detained by the NAB in September 2020 and is currently in jail awaiting trial.
Lahore’s high court freed him on bail in a money laundering case in April of 2021.
Although Imran Khan’s ‘vindictive politics’ appear to favor the younger Sharif, the Opposition as a whole is united in its opposition to him, as is the military establishment, which appears eager to remove Imran Khan from power in light of his recent vitriolic remarks against the United States, including raising the foreign conspiracy charge.
In light of Pakistan’s rapidly deteriorating economic conditions and political unrest, it will be interesting to see if Shehbaz Sharif can infuse new life into the system or if the deeply troubled family reverts to its old ways.