Allies of imprisoned Pakistani ex-premier Imran Khan won more seats in national elections than the political parties who ousted him from power nearly two years ago, according to a final tally of results published Sunday.
The vote last Thursday to choose a new parliament was overshadowed by allegations of vote-rigging, an unprecedented mobile phone shutdown, and the exclusion of Khan and his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party, or PTI, from the vote.
People from the PTI ran as independent candidates because of moves by the Election Commission and Supreme Court to cripple their party’s participation. One step included stripping the party of its electoral symbol, which helps illiterate voters find candidates on the ballot. Another was banning party rallies.
Khan, who was kicked out of office through a no-confidence vote in parliament in 2022, has been in prison since last August. He was barred from contesting the vote because of his criminal convictions and contends his sentences and the slew of legal cases against him are politically motivated.
The final tally showed that independent candidates secured 101 out of 266 seats in the National Assembly, or lower house of parliament.