Islamabad: The PML-N has formally nominated its chief Nawaz Sharif for the office of Prime Minister after the party moved towards a simple majority in the 342-member National Assembly or Pakistan's Lower House of Parliament.

The final approval for Sharif's nomination will be made during a meeting of the PML-N's parliamentary committee before the start of the first session of the new National Assembly.

The PML-N is all set to form government after emerging the single largest party in the National Assembly during the May 11 general election. The party won 126 of 272 directly elected seats. Eighteen independent candidates recently joined the PML-N, taking its tally of directly elected seats to 144.

The PML-N will be allocated 32 reserved seats for women and five reserved seats for non-Muslims. This will give it 181 seats in the 342-member House, or 10 seats more than the 171 required for a simple majority.

The PML-N's strength in the National Assembly could increase further as several parties – including the PML-F, National People's Party and National Party – are expected to enter into an alliance with it. The new Prime Minister will be formally elected during the first session of the new National Assembly, which is expected to be summoned on June 1. The newly elected lawmakers will take their oath on the first day of the session.

(Agencies)

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