A deadline for Pakistan’s government to announce snap general elections will expire today. The opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party has
A deadline for Pakistan’s government to announce snap general elections will expire today.
The opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party has repeatedly called for snap elections since April, when then-Prime Minister Imran Khan lost a no-confidence vote and was replaced by Shehbaz Sharif. These calls have resulted in many PTI-organised rallies, the most prominent of them being the ongoing Long March to Islamabad – which has been erratic after an assassination attempt on Khan in Wazirabad. Khan is the PTI’s founder and still leads the party, which is the main opposition to the incumbent ruling multi-party coalition—the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM).
If general elections are not announced, the PTI is expected to dissolve the provincial assemblies in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa – provinces they command a majority in and are in power via a coalition respectively.
Expect the ruling PDM to continue ignoring calls for elections and instead tackle the various problems Pakistan is facing. Continued border clashes with Afghanistan on the Durand Line are a pressing security threat, while controlling rising inflation ahead of the ninth review of Pakistan’s IMF funding in early 2023 also looms large. As the PTI’s deadline is self-imposed, expect the provincial assemblies to be dissolved later this month and elections for them to be held in January.