Islamabad: Veteran PML-N leader Ayaz Sadiq was on Monday elected Speaker of Pakistan's National Assembly with a thumping majority.

The Parliamentarian from Lahore bagged 258 of the 313 votes that were cast in the election of the Speaker in the Lower House of the Parliament. One vote was declared invalid.

Sadiq's rivals secured far fewer votes - Shaheryar Afridi of the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf got only 31 votes while SA Iqbal Qadri of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement got 23 votes.

"Ayaz Sadiq, who has obtained more votes than the aggregate votes secured by other candidates, is declared to have been elected as Speaker of the National Assembly," said outgoing Speaker Fehmida Mirza, who was the first woman to hold the post.

"As the custodian of this House, I want to assure you that I will run the National Assembly in a completely impartial manner so that everyone feels I do not belong to any one party but that I am the Speaker of the whole Assembly," Sadiq said.

The voting for the Speaker was done through secret ballot during a session chaired by outgoing Speaker Mirza. Sadiq is the 19th Speaker of the Lower House of the Parliament.

The election of the new Prime Minister will be done on June 5.


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