QUETTA: Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam Fazl (JUI-F) won the NA-260 Quetta-cum-Chagai by-election on Sunday, after a tough contest with the Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M).
According to unofficial results, the JUI-F candidate, Usman Badini, got 43,969 votes, whereas BNP-M’s candidate Sardar Bahadur Khan Mengal secured 37,786 votes.
The JUI-F candidate was backed by the National Party (NP), a coalition partner in the Balochistan government, as well as MPA Amanullah Notezai.
Badini had contested for the Senate seats in 2009 and 2012 as an independent candidate, but was unsuccessful both times.
The by-elections were held after the death of Pashtoonkhwa Milli Awami Party’s (PkMAP) leader Abdul Rahim Mandokhail, who was elected on this seat during the general elections of 2013 on the party’s ticket. PkMAP candidate Jamal Tarakai, however, suffered a major blow in polls and secured only 20,169 votes.
PPP candidate Sardarzada Umair Muhammad Hassani secured approximately 15,000 votes. The PPP leaders claimed that the elections were rigged and that their victory was turned into defeat during the elections. PPP supporters also held a protest outside the ECP office in the constituency on Sunday.
The Awami National Party, BNP-Awami and Hazara Democratic Party (HDP) had supported BNP-M’s candidate during the elections, while the PkMAP candidate was supported by Majlis Wahdatul Muslimeen. The win takes the number of JUI-F seats in the National Assembly up to seven while the PkMAP seats have decreased from four to three. According to the ECP, a total of 407 polling stations were established in the constituency, out of which 320 polling stations were declared the most sensitive; 50 were said to be sensitive, and 37 polling stations were declared normal.
Published in Daily Times, July 17th , 2017.