Syed Mamnoon Hussain, a close aide of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, was elected as the 12th President of Pakistan on Tuesday. He will replace incumbent Asif Ali Zardari in September.
Hussain (73) was born in Agra and belongs to an Urdu-speaking ethnic group that migrated from India during partition in 1947.
The textile businessman is a longtime member of the PML-N and served as governor of Sindh for about four months in 1999, but otherwise has not been a prominent figure in national politics.
In his brief comments after being elected, Mamnoon Hussain told reporters that he would be working for strengthening the federation. “I am no longer affiliated with one party as I am the president of Pakistan.” Hussain will take oath of office on September 9.
Hussain polled 432 votes in the electoral college while his closest rival, ex-judge Wajiuddin Ahmad of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party polled 77 votes.
A large number of lawmakers from opposition Pakistan Peoples Party and the Awami National Party boycotted the voting. Karachi-based MQM party, nationalist parties as well as some religious parties voted for Hussain while right-wing Jamaat-e-Islami voted for Wajiuddin.
With agency inputs