Pakistan's NA to elect PM today, Gillani set to win

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Islamabad, Mar 24 (UNI) The Pakistan's National Assembly will meet today to decide upon the country's next Prime Minister with Pakistan's Peoples Party (PPP) candidate Makhdoom Yousaf Raza Gillani most likely to grab the top-notch post.

Prime minister-designate of the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) and its allied parties former chief minister Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi will challenge Mr Gillani in the House that will meet at 1600 hrs.

In the 342-member House, the PPP claims to corner two-thirds of the vote leaving little scope for Mr Elahi who says to have filed papers only to protect democracy against one-party rule.

''One-party rule is against democracy and so I agreed to file nomination papers despite knowing the number game,'' The Daily Times quoted Mr Elahi as saying.

Mr Gillani is supported by the PML-Nawaz, the Awami National Party, the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl, members of the NA (MNAs) from the Tribal Areas and most Independent MNAs. The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) has also extended its support to the PPP candidate.

Mr Gillani and Mr Elahi had submitted their nomination papers to the National Assembly Secretariat yesterday.

The PPP's prime ministerial candidate after submitting the nomination paper said, ''I will deliver a policy statement and party's strategy in the National Assembly so that the challenges facing the nation can be met effectively.'' UNI XC KD DB1032

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