With over 100 seats counted, Imran Khan’s supporters lead in Pakistan: Media

With over 100 seats counted, Imran Khan's supporters lead in Pakistan: Media

ISLAMABAD: Supporters of jailed former prime minister Imran Khan had the edge on Friday (Feb 9) in Pakistan’s election results from over 100 seats, local media said, after vote counts were hit by unusual delays that the government ascribed to a suspension of mobile phone services.

Geo News said independents, who mostly owe allegiance to Khan, had won 47 of 106 seats for which it had results. A total of 265 seats were contested in Thursday’s election.

By 8am GMT (4pm Singapore time), the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had announced 70 official results, with independents getting 24.

The Pakistan Peoples Party of Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the son of assassinated premier Benazir Bhutto, also got 24 while former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) won 18.

The rest were won by small parties.

Khan is in jail and his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party was barred from the election, so his supporters contested as independents.

Analysts have predicted there may be no clear winner, adding to the woes of a country struggling to recover from an economic crisis while it grapples with rising militant violence in a deeply polarised political environment.

“A timely announcement of the results, leading to a smooth formation of a new government will reduce policy and political uncertainty,” Moody’s Investors Service said. “This is crucial for the country that is facing very challenging macroeconomic conditions.”