Pakistan Elections 2018 Predictions; Nawaz Sharif's Future

What will be the impact of tragic terror attacks with mass casualties on Pakistan's July 25, 2018 general elections? How does the current situation compare with the situation in 2013 elections? Will the elections proceed as scheduled?

Pakistan Elections 2018 Forecast by  Intermarket and Exotix Investment Firms

Which party is likely to get the most votes and parliamentary seats in Pakistan's July 25, 2018 general elections? Will one party get a clear majority? Who will form the new government? Is PTI Chief Imran Khan likely to be the next prime minister of Pakistan? Will it be a coalition government? How can a weak coalition government implement a radical reform agenda proposed by Imran Khan?

Why did former prime minister of Pakistan Mr. Nawaz Sharif, convicted recently by a Pakistani court on charges of having assets beyond income, come back to Lahore to face certain arrest? What is his strategy? What is Nawaz Sharif's future in Pakistani politics after his conviction and arrest? How will PMLN fare in 2018 and future elections? Will the disgraced Sharif be able to rehabilitate himself and reclaim the mantle of national leadership? Will future judges of Pakistan Supreme Court set aide his conviction to clear the way for him to become Pakistan's prime minister for the fourth time?

Viewpoint From Overseas host Faraz Darvesh discusses these questions with panelists Misbah Azam and Riaz Haq (

Here's Urdu version streamed live on Facebook:

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

Nawaz Sharif's Report Card 2013-18

CPEC Transforming Pakistan's Least Developed Regions

Pakistan: The Other 99% of the Pakistan Story

How Pakistan's Corrupt Elite Siphon Off Public Funds

Bumper Crops and Soaring Credit Drive Tractor Sales

Panama Leaks

How West Enables Corruption in Developing Countries

Declining Terror Toll in Pakistan


Hasan said…
Please tell me what’s the point of this election? The Security Establishment had already decided to back PTI and has put up all sorts of roadblocks against PMLN to manipulate the outcome. Farcical!
Riaz Haq said…
#Hope still trumps #despair in #Pakistan's democracy
#ElectionPakistan2018 campaign shows there are countless of people trying to bring about change in Pakistan, indicating better days ahead for the country.

Pakistan's election on Wednesday has made headlines for pre-poll rigging, political engineering and the turf wars between the military, the judiciary and the politicians.

But the catchy negativity has clouded the energy and political awareness which can be felt from the streets of Karachi through the bazaars of Lahore to the tea stalls of Peshawar and Quetta.

I've covered Pakistan's elections for nearly two decades and each time witnessed much room for improvement.

This time though people seem a bit more aware, a bit more cognisant of the reality regardless of who they support.

That awareness and maturity seems like a sign for better days ahead for the nuclear-powered, Muslim-majority state, home to more than 200 million people.

Nawaz Sharif, Pakistan's former prime minister, has been found guilty by an accountability court and Imran Khan, his main opponent, wants to claim credit for it.

The battle for narratives which ensued was vicious, personal and uncouth. But when all the attention was focused on verbal attacks by point-scoring politicians, the youngest leader from the three main parties - Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, son of assassinated Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and controversial President Asif Zardari, appeared to keep his cool.

To the surprise of many political boffins, he managed to pull crowds at rallies in Punjab and Sindh. But the biggest difference was his focus on substance, turning his attention to policies and remaining detached from personal attacks.

Although his party has been in power in southern Pakistan for decades and has a dismal record of providing the basics, but Bilawal's message seems to be of a new man taking charge with the will to improve things.

Another young candidate, in a political arena of seasoned politicians, is Jibran Nasir, who has been courageous in challenging bigotry upfront.

His campaign has been attacked by religious zealots but he seems to have maintained his composure and stuck to his message of promises to improve things for his constituents.

He is a rare breed of young politicians who entered the arena without any financial muscle, family or political backing.

Pakistan also saw a 12-year-old standing up to campaign after his father was implicated in corruption.

The young man and his sister became a symbol of resistance for the Nawaz league as they campaigned on behalf of their father Pakistan Muslim league Nawaz accused the national accountability bureau of being used as a tool to implicate politicians.

Qamar-Ul Islam Raja's father was arrested on corruption charges just one day after he became the challenger against the disgruntled former Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar - who left Nawaz's party after the PML-N supremo insisted on challenging the judiciary and the military establishment.

In his speeches, the 12-year old dodged tricky questions and insisted on following the party line - not a small feat for someone his age.

Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal areas (FATA) will vote for the first time as a governed area - after seven decades of independence, this is no longer just an administered tribal belt.

This region witnessed unprecedented political campaigning. People can now vote for provincial representatives and elect their own local bodies. The biggest change has been in the security situation.

Even before the so-called US war on terror, this area was considered home to Taliban, al-Qaeda and fighters from Uzbekistan to Chechnya.

But after years of military operations, people have a semblance of a normal life.

Why is this significant? Because now tribal elders, drug lords, smugglers and all those who used to exercise immense control know the people can challenge them with the power of the vote.

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