He has now been elected as Prime Minister
Pakistan’s parliament has elected Shehbaz Sharif as the country’s new Prime Minister, replacing Imran Khan who was removed from office following a no-confidence vote.
Khan became the first Pakistani Prime Minister to be ousted by a no-confidence vote in the early hours of April 10, 2022.
He had been in office since 2018 but opponents blamed him for failing to revive the economy and tackle corruption.
Khan accused critics of colluding with the United States to unseat him but has provided no evidence and urged people to protest.
After the no-confidence vote, Khan tweeted:
“Pakistan became an independent state in 1947; but the freedom struggle begins again today against a foreign conspiracy of regime change.
“It is always the people of the country who defend their sovereignty and democracy.”
Shehbaz Sharif submitted his nomination to be Prime Minister and it was endorsed by other opposition parties.
He has now been elected as Prime Minister and is set to be sworn in later on April 11.
But who is Shehbaz Sharif?
The 70-year-old is the President of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).
He is the younger brother of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
Sharif was born in Lahore and graduated from the Government College University.
He initially joined his family’s steel business and became the President of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industries in 1985.
Sharif’s political career began in the 1980s when his older brother was inducted into the Punjab Provincial Cabinet as Finance Minister.
In 1988, Sharif entered the Punjab Provincial Assembly and was elected to the National Assembly in 1990.
In 1993, Sharif again stood for a Provincial Assembly seat and became leader of the Opposition in the Punjab Assembly.
He became the Chief Minister of Punjab for the first time after the 1997 elections.
But he fled Pakistan after Pervez Musharraf’s military coup in 1999.
Sharif was re-elected as Chief Minister in 2008 after returning to Pakistan in 2007.
He became the President of PML-N in February 2018 after his brother Nawaz Sharif was disqualified from holding office.
This was due to being implicated in the Panama Papers.
Shehbaz Sharif was previously nominated by PML-N as Prime Minister in 2018 but lost to Imran Khan.
He then became the Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly.
However, Shehbaz has faced corruption charges like his brother.
In December 2019, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) froze 23 properties belonging to Shehbaz Sharif and his son, Hamza, accusing them of money laundering.
He was arrested by the NAB in the same case in September 2020 and incarcerated pending trial.
Sharif has now been elected Prime Minister, with 174 votes in favour after more than 100 politicians from Mr Khan’s party walked out of the National Assembly in protest.