ISLAMABAD: The number of votes rejected in the presidential election increased from 27 to 28 as Chief Election Commissioner retired Justice Sardar Mohammad Raza, in his capacity as the returning officer, officially declared on Wednesday Dr Arif Alvi of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) the winner of the poll.

As per the final result of the election prepared in the presence of representatives of the three candidates, out of the 28 rejected votes, 16 had been cast in the Punjab Assembly, six in Parliament House, five in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly and one in the Sindh Assembly.

The winner, Dr Alvi, and runner-up Maulana Fazlur Rahman bagged 352 and 184 electoral votes, respectively, and not 352 and 185 as announced on Tuesday.

According to Form VII issued by the returning officer, the number of votes secured by PPP candidate Aitzaz Ahsan remained unchanged at 124.

The total number of valid votes polled and the electoral votes declined from 1,083 and 661 to 1,082 and 660 in the final result.

The minor changes however did not affect the margin of victory.

A total of 1,110 votes were cast during the election that was simultaneously held at Parliament House in the federal capital and the provincial assemblies of Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan.

Dr Alvi got 212 of the 424 valid votes polled in the parliament, where MNAs and senators cast their votes. He secured more votes than his opponents in all the legislatures, except the assembly of Sindh — the province he belongs to.

The ECP has sent the official result to the federal government, which will notify Dr Alvi as the 13th president of the country. He will replace President Mamnoon Hussain, who will complete his tenure on September 9.

Published in Dawn, September 6th, 2018

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