The Pakistani electoral commission has announced that the country is to hold presidential elections on 6 September. The elections follow the resignation of Pervez Musharraf this week, after nine years in power. He decided to stand down to avoid being impeached by the governing coalition.
In Pakistan the president is elected by the two houses of parliament and the four provincial assemblies. The largest party in the coalition, murdered prime minister Benazir Bhutto’s PPP, wants to put forward her husband Asi Ali Zardari as a presidential candidate. Within the Pakistani government, there is intense disagreement over possible candidates. Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s PML-N party is threatening to leave the coalition as a result.