Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday won a trust vote in the National Assembly, Dawn reported. Khan had sought the vote after his party, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, suffered a setback in the recently-held Senate elections.
The session was marked by an Opposition boycott of the vote. Earlier in the day, clashes also broke out between government supporters and members of the Pakistan Muslim League (N).
Khan secured 178 votes in the trust vote, six more than the number needed to win confidence. As many as 155 leaders from the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf voted for Khan.
The Pakistan prime minister thanked the leaders who supported him. “Yesterday [Friday] evening when I saw you, I realised that you were really hurt when we lost the Senate election of Hafeez Shaikh,” Khan said during his speech in the Assembly, according to Dawn. “But when I saw you, I felt very good because I saw a team in you and our team will get stronger. Because God will test your faith again and again.”
Khan hit out at his predecessor Nawaz Sharif and former Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari on alleged corruption charges, referring to them as “thieves”. He alleged that Sharif faked his illness to go abroad so he could escape legal action.
Moving on to the subject of economy, Khan said that Pakistan was on its way to recovery. “The current account is improving constantly and now even the rupee is strengthening against the dollar without government intervention,” he was quoted as saying by Dawn.
However, Khan said that tackling inflation was the biggest challenge facing his government. Khan added that his team was making all efforts to control inflation.
Khan’s party won 18 seats seats in the Senate elections. However, PTI candidate Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, who is also Pakistan’s finance minister, lost the crucial seat from Islamabad.
The Opposition said the Senate election setback showed Khan no longer had the support of the House, and a trust vote was unnecessary, Reuters reported.