ISLAMABAD : A public opinion survey conducted by United States-based organisation Global Strategic Partners has revealed that Shehbaz Sharif is favoured by the majority of Pakistan to become the prime minister.
According to details of the survey, data for which was conducted by Institute for Public Opinion Research, 65 percent of the respondents voted chief minister Shehbaz Sharif the highest among Nawaz Sharif, Imran Khan and Asif Ali Zardari.
At least 51 percent of the respondents said that they like Imran Khan.
A comparative analysis shows 53 percent of the respondents see Shehbaz Sharif as a better potential prime minister than Imran Khan whereas 39 percent of the people think the other way around.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf comes second in the potential 2018 federal government-list with 27 percent and Pakistan People’s Party stands third in terms of ballot power.
The survey has come in some six months ahead of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s tenure expiration which is due in mid 2018.
Pakistan has been politically struggling for over two months since Nawaz Sharif, president of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz was ousted in a verdict delivered by the apex court on July 28th in a corruption case pushed for by opposition parties namely Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Awami Muslim League and Jamaat-e-Islami.
Then petroleum minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi was sworn in as the Prime Minister of Pakistan following disqualification of Nawaz Sharif and disolution of the cabinet.
In multiple interviews since then, PM Abbasi has cleared that policies of Nawaz Sharif are to be pursued for the rest of the tenure of Nawaz-league.
Since Nawaz Sharif has been convicted in the corruption case, Pakistan s biggest political party has succeeded in having its candidate, wife of the ex-premier Kulsoom Nawaz win NA-120 by-election on September 17 and draw a counter narrative to corruption charges.
Meanwhile, there have been reports of intra-party rifts doing rounds which are invariably denied except for former interior minister chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan who has stated that there are differences of opinion within the party.
However, he has denied divisions in the political party.
Maryam Nawaz, daughter of the disqualified premier, who led successful electioneering in NA-120 by-polls among all leaders of the party have maintained that both Nawaz Sharif and brother Shehbaz Sharif are on the same page.
Whilst opposition parties have been claiming of divisions within the federally ruling party, PML-N has denied tensions between the two leaders.
Originally published by INP