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Pakistan: Maryam Nawaz makes history as Punjab's first female Chief Minister

Lahore [Pakistan]: Maryam Nawaz, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) nominee, has made history by becoming Punjab's first female chief minister, ARY News reported.
She secured 220 votes in the election, triumphing over her opponent, Rana Aftab Ahmad of the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC), who received zero votes due to a boycott by SIC members.

The Punjab Assembly session, presided over by newly-elected Speaker Malik Ahmad Khan, witnessed opposition members from the Sunni Ittehad Council boycotting the proceedings. Speaker Khan declared that only elections for the chief minister would take place, and no lawmakers were permitted to speak during the session, according to ARY News.
In response to the boycott, Speaker Khan formed a committee, including Khawaja Salman Rafique, Salman Nazeer, Samiullah, and Khalil Tahir Sindhu, to persuade the boycotting legislators to return to the Assembly.
Maryam Nawaz's candidacy for the chief minister position was against Rana Aftab Ahmed of the Sunni Ittehad Council. The PML-N, with a substantial number of candidates, faced competition in the election, but Maryam Nawaz's clear majority in the house ensured her victory.
The oath-taking ceremony for the Punjab Assembly members occurred earlier, with 321 out of 371 members taking their oaths.
The PML-N had previously secured victory in the Punjab Assembly speaker and deputy speaker elections, further solidifying its dominance. Malik Muhammad Ahmed Khan was elected as the PA Speaker with 224 votes, while Malik Zaheer Ahmed Channer, the PML-N candidate for deputy speaker, defeated Mohammad Moinuddin from the SIC with 220 votes, ARY News reported.
Maryam Nawaz is the daughter of former Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif. She was initially involved in the family's philanthropic organisations.
In 1992, she married Safdar Awan. Safdar was serving as Captain in the Pakistan Army at that time and was the security officer of Nawaz Sharif during the latter's tenure as Prime Minister of Pakistan. She has three children with Safdar Awan
In 2012, she entered politics and was put in charge of the election campaign during the 2013 general elections. In 2013, she was appointed the Chairperson of the Prime Minister's Youth Programme. However, she resigned in 2014 after her appointment was challenged.
During 2024 Pakistani general election, she was elected to the National Assembly of Pakistan (NA) and the Provincial Assembly of the Punjab for the first time, marking her parliamentary debut.

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