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Saturday, April 13, 2024

Maryam Nawaz sworn in as CM Punjab

Her adversary, Rana Aftab Ahmad of the SIC, failed to garner any votes due to the party's abstention from the electoral process.

In a historic session of the Punjab Assembly convened on Monday, Maryam Nawaz of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was elected as the province’s chief minister, marking a significant milestone as the first woman to hold this esteemed position in Pakistan’s political annals. Notably, her ascension to power was juxtaposed with the Sunni Ittehad Council’s (SIC) boycott of the proceedings.

Maryam’s victory, securing 220 votes in the wake of the recent general elections on February 8, underscored a pivotal moment in the country’s political landscape. Her adversary, Rana Aftab Ahmad of the SIC, failed to garner any votes due to the party’s abstention from the electoral process.

Addressing the assembly following her triumph, Maryam commenced her speech with a gracious recitation, extending congratulations to the newly-appointed speaker and deputy speaker. Expressing her desire for inclusive democratic participation, she lamented the absence of the opposition during the poll boycott but expressed gratitude to her party members, as well as to other political entities, for their support.

Reflecting on her personal journey, Maryam conveyed a message of resilience and gratitude, acknowledging the trials that shaped her path to leadership. She credited her late mother for imparting invaluable lessons, guiding her through challenges to this pivotal moment.

Vision over five years

In assuming her role, Maryam pledged to uphold a vision for Punjab’s progress over the next five years. Key objectives included economic revitalization through business empowerment, streamlined administrative processes, and anti-corruption measures. Additionally, she outlined plans for youth empowerment, educational reforms, healthcare enhancement, and infrastructure development, promising tangible improvements across various sectors.

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Furthermore, Maryam articulated her commitment to social justice, emphasising gender equality, minority rights, and technological advancement as integral components of her governance agenda. Initiatives such as the establishment of IT cities, provision of free Wi-Fi, and investigations into pressing issues underscored her proactive approach to governance.

As the assembly session concluded, Speaker Khan adjourned indefinitely, marking the dawn of a new era under Maryam Nawaz’s leadership. Her historic appointment not only shattered gender barriers but also cemented her place as the fourth member of the Sharif family to govern Punjab, symbolising a continuation of their political legacy.