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Maryam Nawaz takes oath as Punjab chief minister, vows ‘no revenge’

Elected CM with 220 votes: Maryam becomes first woman in Pakistan's history to become CM: Rival Rana Aftab gets no vote as Opposition members boycott Punjab Assembly session: In her victory speech, Maryam promises more loans to women than men: Unveils Ramazan package: Lays focus on youth

By News Desk

February 26, 2024 10:21 AM


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Newly-elected Punjab Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz Sharif took oath of office at an impressive ceremony held at Governor’s House in Lahore on Monday hours after she was elected as province’s chief executive by the Punjab Assembly, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

With PML-N Quaid Nawaz Sharif sitting on her one side and prime minister-in-waiting Shehbaz Sharif on the other, Maryam Nawaz completed the oath administered by Governor Balighur Rehman followed by a thunderous applause from the guests present there.

Nawaz Sharif and Shehbaz Sharif hugged Maryam Nawaz after the oath-taking ceremony and congratulated her.

Earlier, Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz Sharif declared that she has no desire or wish for revenge, rather she will seek cooperation of all members of the house to take the province on the road to progress.

PML-N’s Maryam Nawaz was elected Punjab chief minister with 220 votes, announced Speaker Malik Ahmad Khan on Monday after voting held in the provincial assembly amid boycott by the Opposition members.

Resultantly, rival Rana Aftab Khan of the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC), received no votes as his party opted to boycotted the election. At the start of the session, he and other SIC lawmakers had walked out after the speaker did not allow him to speak.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqZPAeebWSs

In her victory speech after electing first women chief minister of any province of Pakistan, Maryam Nawaz said “I want to thank those who put me in difficulties, which included death cells, court visits, incarceration of my father and the death of mother, but despite all this, I feel indebted to my adversaries. Today, where I am standing, it is all because of this struggle,” she added.

Maryam Nawaz Sharif has declared that she has no desire or wish for revenge, rather she will seek cooperation of all members of the house to take the province on the road to progress, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

PML-N’s Maryam Nawaz was elected Punjab chief minister with 220 votes, announced Speaker Malik Ahmad Khan on Monday after voting held in the provincial assembly amid boycott by the Opposition members.

Resultantly, rival Rana Aftab Khan of the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC), received no votes as his party opted to boycotted the election. At the start of the session, he and other SIC lawmakers had walked out after the speaker did not allow him to speak.

In her comprehensive victory speech after electing first women chief minister of any province of Pakistan, Maryam Nawaz said “I want to thank those who put me in difficulties, which included death cells, court visits, incarceration of my father and the death of mother, but despite all this, I feel indebted to my adversaries. Today, where I am standing, it is all because of this struggle,” she added.

The chief minister maintained that doors of her office and chamber are also open for the members of the Opposition.

Air ambulance service to be launche

Maryam Nawaz announced free medicines in the emergency blocs of all public sector hospitals across the province. She also announced launching of an air ambulance service in the province.

She claimed that at least one state-of-the-art hospital will be built in every district of the province.

Moreover, all departments will be set up in all major hospitals of the province.

Danish schools, scholarships, transport, electric bikes for students

Maryam Nawaz announced Danish school system in every district of Punjab besides transport system for school in the province.

Maryam promised national curriculum will be upgraded and child labour scholarships will be restored.

The CM Punjab said that as a mother, it was her dream that no girl should be left out of school due to lack of resources. Maryam also announced electric motorbikes for the students.

Maryam also paid tribute to her father who she said “handheld” her from the general elections till the position she was in today. “From the day I was nominated as Punjab CM. Nawaz Sharif chalked out a five-year plan for the province and gave me valuable advice every day,” she said and added “I want to take this moment and tell the youth that you should respect your parents because the prayers of our parents take us to the position where we never envisioned to be.”

Maryam Nawaz also vowed to take forward the legacy of the PML-N, saying her appointment is an honour for every woman in the country and hoped that the tradition of female leadership would continue in the future as well. “Being a woman, a daughter will not come in the way of your dreams,” she added.

The newly-elected chief minister also unveiled a Ramazan relief package, Nigehban, for the province, saying it included essentials worth Rs6.5 to Rs7 million which would be distributed to the public at their doorsteps in packages during Ramazan.

Maryam also outlined that the PML-N’s key aim during her tenure would be the provision of employment, education and healthcare. “I was born in an affluent household but the difficulties I have faced, I got a chance to hold direct interaction with the common people and I am aware of their problems. I know the expectations they have from the government. After taking oath, I will go to my office and begin the implementation of my manifesto,” she added.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=suNA4L2Dfb8

Maryam said she was committed to work for not just the MPAs who voted for her but also for those who didn’t vote for her. “I want to give a message to the Opposition: the doors of my chamber and heart will always remain open for them as they are for my party members,” she remarked.

Maryam thanked God and her supporters in her maiden speech at the floor of the Punjab Assembly. “Today, I am upset that the respectable members of the opposition benches are not present here. I wish they would be a part of the political and democratic process,” she added.

Maryam recalled that despite several challenges and difficulties, her party members and the PML-N never left the ground empty. “If the opposition was present today, and if they had protested during my speech, I would have been happy,” she opined.

She asserted that there will be zero tolerance for police high-handedness, saying a recent such incident, which took place in Taxila over the weekend, will be investigated.

Maryam said the safety of women in the province was her first priority. “Therefore, I am announcing a dedicated helpline for women,” she said and added women would also be provided proper facilities, including separate washrooms and daycare centres, at workplaces. “Harassing any woman is Maryam Nawaz’s red line,” she affirmed.

Earli,er the voting to elect a new chief minister of Punjab was held in the provincial assembly amid boycott drama by the Opposition members belonging to the Sunni Ittehad Council.

Punjab Assembly Speaker Malik Ahmad Khan earlier put a halt to the house proceedings to elect a new chief minister after the Opposition members boycotted the session.

The Punjab Assembly MPAs were about to elect a new leader of the House when Sunni Ittehad Council’s candidate for CM slot Rana Aftab stood up from his chair and sought permission to speaker.

Speaker Malik Ahmad Khan declined his request, asking to sit down on his seat. This triggered the Opposition to walk out of House boycotting the proceedings.

But it did not end there. As the speaker was about to proceed with the agenda, PML-N candidate for the CM slot Maryam Nawaz then raised her voice, asking the speaker to call the Opposition members back

Maryam Nawaz said “Let the Opposition speak. Whoever wins or loses, the Opposition should be wooed back. This is the beauty of democracy.”

The speaker then formed a committee to talk with the Opposition which succeeded in its mission and brought them back to the House.

However, the Opposition members again staged a walkout from the House and went into the lobby.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CozT9SAjGp0

'Historic Day'

The day has been described as “historic” as PML-N expressed its unshakeable confidence that Maryam Nawaz Sharif will become the first woman chief minister of Punjab as the provincial legislature goes into voting to elect a leader of the house.

The MPAs have started to arrive at the Punjab Assembly and the session is scheduled to start shortly.

The PML-N is all set to win the coveted position of Punjab chief minister amid reports that the PTI-backed candidates promised a ‘surprise’ in the 371-member provincial assembly.

PML-N Senior Vice-President and Chief Organiser Maryam Nawaz Sharif is the party’s candidate for the chief minister slot against Rana Aftab Ahmed of the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzPIBmK-RdA

Maryam Nawaz reached the Punjab Assembly where a large number of party supporters sitting in gallery welcomed her warmyly in the House by raising slogans. She sat down on her seat with a frame picture of her late mother Begum Kalsoom Nawaz placed on her table.

Talking to newsmen at the Assembly premises on Monday, Rana Aftab declared “We have good numbers and ready to ‘surprise’ our opponents.”

In a post uploaded on X platform on Monday, the PML-N has termed the day “historic” as election for the Punjab chief minister is set to take place today.

The party said “For the first time in the history of our nation, a woman will become the Punjab chief minister. Maryam Nawaz Sharif will be the first woman to take the oath as CM Punjab!”.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpjmGER1OqY

Earlier, the SIC had nominated Mian Aslam Iqbal, MPA-elect from Lahore, for the CM slot but it replaced him with Rana Aftab from Faisalabad, a former PPP jiyala, as Rana Iqbal had not come to the house to take oath as MPA, fearing his arrest by the Punjab police.

Talking to the media after filing his nomination papers on Sunday, Rana Aftab said that the SIC was in a position to “give a surprise in Monday’s election”. He, however, regretted that SIC MPAs were not being allowed to enter the assembly premises.

The victory of Maryam Nawaz is imminent in the today’s election, as the party’s nominee for the office of speaker secured 224 votes against SIC’s 98 in the election held on Saturday.

A confident Maryam Nawaz is engaged in consultations to pick her cabinet and formulate her development agenda, which would be made public after assuming control of the province. The bureaucracy, including the chief secretary and the inspector-general of police, have already begun giving her briefings on various affairs.

Interestingly, the Governor House has issued invitations only to PML-N elders for the swearing-in ceremony to be held shortly after the polling for the chief minister’s slot. Maryam Sharif will be the 30th chief minister of Punjab and the first woman to rule the largest province of the country.

 

Reporters Rao Dilshad and Hassan Ali


News Desk


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