Prime Minister of Pakistan

Prime Minister of Pakistan

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The Prime Minister of Pakistan ( Wazir-e- Azam meaning "Grand Minister"), is the Head of Government
Head of government
Head of government is the chief officer of the executive branch of a government, often presiding over a cabinet. In a parliamentary system, the head of government is often styled prime minister, chief minister, premier, etc...

 of Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 who is designated to exercise as the country's Chief Executive. By the Constitution of Pakistan
Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is the supreme law of Pakistan. Known as the Constitution of 1973, it was drafted by the government of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and, following additions by the opposition parties, was approved by the legislative assembly on April 10, 1973...

, Pakistan has the parliamentary democratic system
Parliamentary system
A parliamentary system is a system of government in which the ministers of the executive branch get their democratic legitimacy from the legislature and are accountable to that body, such that the executive and legislative branches are intertwined....

 of government
Government
Government refers to the legislators, administrators, and arbitrators in the administrative bureaucracy who control a state at a given time, and to the system of government by which they are organized...

. The current Prime minister of Pakistan is Yousaf Raza Gillani
Yousaf Raza Gillani
Yousuf Raza Gilani is the current prime minister of Islamic Republic of Pakistan. He was nominated as Prime Minister by the PPP, with the support of its coalition partners, Pakistan Muslim League , Awami National Party, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam and Muttahida Qaumi Movement, on 22 March 2008...

 of Pakistan Peoples Party
Pakistan Peoples Party
The Pakistan Peoples Party , is a democratic socialist political party in Pakistan affiliated with Socialist International. Pakistan People's Party is the largest political party of Pakistan...

.

The Prime Minister is elected by the National Assembly
National Assembly of Pakistan
The National Assembly of Pakistan is the lower house of the bicameral Majlis-e-Shura, which also compromises the President of Pakistan and Senate . The National Assembly and the Senate both convene at Parliament House in Islamabad...

, members of which are elected by popular vote. Most commonly, the leader of the party or coalition with the most votes becomes the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister is responsible for appointing a cabinet as well as running the government operations. The Seventeenth Amendment
Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution Act, 2003 was an amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan passed in December 2003, after over a year of political wrangling between supporters and opponents of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf....

 imposed a check on this power, making it subject to Supreme Court approval or veto
Veto
A veto, Latin for "I forbid", is the power of an officer of the state to unilaterally stop an official action, especially enactment of a piece of legislation...

. However, in 2010, the XVII Amendment
Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution Act, 2003 was an amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan passed in December 2003, after over a year of political wrangling between supporters and opponents of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf....

 has been revered and is replaced with more effective XVIII Amendment
Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan
Amendment XVIII of the Constitution of Pakistan, was passed by the National Assembly of Pakistan on April 8, 2010, removing the power of the President of Pakistan to dissolve the Parliament unilaterally, turning Pakistan from a semi-presidential to a parliamentary republic, and renaming...

 to the Constitution, clearly turning Pakistan from a semi-presidential to a parliamentary republic.

The office of Prime Minister did not exist during three periods of Pakistan's history, a circumstance different from a vacancy in the office, as a result of the dismissal of an individual Prime Minister by the President or by Martial law. In the first two cases, Pakistan had no Prime Minister from October 7, 1958 until July 3, 1972, and from July 5, 1977 until March 24, 1985– periods of martial law
Martial law
Martial law is the imposition of military rule by military authorities over designated regions on an emergency basis— only temporary—when the civilian government or civilian authorities fail to function effectively , when there are extensive riots and protests, or when the disobedience of the law...

. During these periods, the President, who was the chief martial law administrator
Chief Martial Law Administrator
The office of the Chief Martial Law Administrator was a senior government post created in countries such as Pakistan, Bangladesh and Indonesia that gave considerable executive authority and powers to the holder of the post to enforce martial law in the country. This office has been used mostly by...

, effectively had the powers of Prime Minister as the head of government, without the title of Prime Minister. In the third case, after Pervez Musharraf
Pervez Musharraf
Pervez Musharraf , is a retired four-star general who served as the 13th Chief of Army Staff and tenth President of Pakistan as well as tenth Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee. Musharraf headed and led an administrative military government from October 1999 till August 2007. He ruled...

's coup, Pakistan did not have a Prime Minister from October 12, 1999 to November 20, 2002. During this time, Musharraf, holding the office of Chief Executive, was effectively the Head of Government
Head of government
Head of government is the chief officer of the executive branch of a government, often presiding over a cabinet. In a parliamentary system, the head of government is often styled prime minister, chief minister, premier, etc...

. Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani
Yousaf Raza Gillani
Yousuf Raza Gilani is the current prime minister of Islamic Republic of Pakistan. He was nominated as Prime Minister by the PPP, with the support of its coalition partners, Pakistan Muslim League , Awami National Party, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam and Muttahida Qaumi Movement, on 22 March 2008...

 is the currently 26th Prime Minister of Pakistan.

History


The office of Prime Minister was created immediately after the establishment and the creation of Pakistan in 1947. Originally, the Prime Minister was given central executive powers, which were later reduced as the power of the Governor-General
Governor-General of Pakistan
The Governor-General of Pakistan was the representative in Pakistan of the Crown from the country's independence in 1947. When Pakistan was proclaimed a republic in 1956 the connection with the British monarchy ended, and the office of Governor-General was abolished.-History:Pakistan gained...

 grew. Liaquat Ali Khan
Liaquat Ali Khan
For other people with the same or similar name, see Liaqat Ali Nawabzada Liaquat Ali Khan was a Pakistani statesman who became the first Prime Minister of Pakistan, Defence minister and Commonwealth, Kashmir Affairs...

 was the first prime minister appointed in 1947, but was assassinated in 1951. From 1951 till 1957, country saw the tenuring of seven different Prime ministers. In 1956, Parliament of Pakistan adopted the 1956 constitution
Constitution of Pakistan of 1956
The Constitution of 1956 was the fundamental law of Pakistan from March 1956 until the Revolution of October 1958.-Origins:Pakistan became independent of the United Kingdom in 1947. Under Section 8 of the Indian Independence Act, 1947, the Government of India Act, 1935 became, with certain...

, replacing the Governor-General with President of Pakistan
President of Pakistan
The President of Pakistan is the head of state, as well as figurehead, of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Recently passed an XVIII Amendment , Pakistan has a parliamentary democratic system of government. According to the Constitution, the President is chosen by the Electoral College to serve a...

. However, the office was disbanded by President Iskandar Mirza and, in a coup d'état
1958 Pakistani coup d'état
The 1958 Pakistani coup d'état refers to the events between October 7, when the President of Pakistan Iskander Mirza abrogated the Constitution of Pakistan and declared martial law, and October 27, when Mirza himself was deposed by Gen. Ayub Khan, the Commander-in-Chief of the Pakistani Army...

 led by his successor General Ayub Khan in 1958. Khan replaced the 1956 parliamentary constitution with 1962 Presidential system
Constitution of Pakistan of 1962
The Constitution of 1962 was the fundamental law of Pakistan from June 1962 until martial law was declared in March 1969. It was eventually replaced by the current Constitution of 1973.-Origins:...

, completely dissolving the Prime minister Secretariat. From 1958 until 1970, there was no prime minister as the country had the Presidential system. In 1970, General Yahya Khan appointed Pakistan Movement activist and respected figure Nurul Amin
Nurul Amin
Nurul Amin , was a prominent Bengali leader of Pakistan's Muslim League who served as the 8th Prime Minister of Pakistan, and the only first and the last Vice President of Pakistan from 1970 till 1971...

 as the Prime minister and illegally created the office of Vice Prime minister for Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Mujibur Rehman. Though, both denied to take the charge of this office, which led to the arrest of both by Pakistan Army Corps of Military Police. After a humiliating and war in East Pakistan
Bangladesh Liberation War
The Bangladesh Liberation War was an armed conflict pitting East Pakistan and India against West Pakistan. The war resulted in the secession of East Pakistan, which became the independent nation of Bangladesh....

, and later war with
Indo-Pakistani War of 1971
The Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 was a military conflict between India and Pakistan. Indian, Bangladeshi and international sources consider the beginning of the war to be Operation Chengiz Khan, Pakistan's December 3, 1971 pre-emptive strike on 11 Indian airbases...

 India, the Presidential system collapsed. Following the imposition of 1973 constitution of Pakistan, the office of Prime minister regained, and architect of this constitution, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto became the elected Prime minister of Pakistan. The 1973 constitution provide the parliamentary system to Pakistan as President of Pakistan as figurehead.

However, Bhutto was overthrown in 1977, and martial law declared again, with the office of Prime Minister being suspended until 1985 when Muhammad Khan Junejo
Muhammad Khan Junejo
Muhammad Khan Junejo was the tenth Prime Minister of Pakistan.-Early life:He was born at Sindhri in Tharparkar of Sindh. He belongs to Sindhi Muslim Rajput family of Junejo clan. Junejo started his political career at the age of twenty one...

 was appointed by the newly elected National Assembly. This election also brought the eighth amendment
Eighth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan
The VIII Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan, was short-time amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan, which was passed by the Majlis-e-Shoora, in the absence of elected Parliament of Pakistan, in 1985. The VIII Amendment was drafted and later enforced by the joint Technocratic-Military...

 to the 1973 constitution, and gave the President powers that balanced those of the Prime Minister. The President was now able to dismiss the Prime Minister and the National Assembly (effectively calling for new elections) without prior consultation with the Prime Minister. In 1988, Benazir Bhutto
Benazir Bhutto
Benazir Bhutto was a democratic socialist who served as the 11th Prime Minister of Pakistan in two non-consecutive terms from 1988 until 1990 and 1993 until 1996....

 was elected as Prime Minister, becoming the first female head of government to be democratically elected in a Muslim country.

From 1990 onwards, the offices of President and Prime Minister would clash, with the President dissolving the National Assembly, and thus dismissing the Prime Minister a total of three times until 1996, with new elections each time. In 1997, Navaz Sharif became Prime minister who would later, through Parliament, drafted and passed Thirteenth
Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan
The XIII Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan was a short-time amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan, adopted by the elected Parliament of Pakistan in 1997 by the government of people elected Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif...

 and Fourteenth Amendment
Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution Act, 1997 was an amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan passed in 1997, during the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, leader of the Pakistan Muslim League party. It subjected Members of Parliament to very strict party discipline...

s. With these Amendments, Sharif became country's strongest Prime minister in the history of Pakistan since 1947. However, it did not last longer. After the coup of Pervez Musharraf in 1999, Musharraf assumed the role of Chief Executive, and was the sole ruler of Pakistan. In October 2002, general elections were held, with no party gaining a majority of the popular vote or National Assembly of Pakistan
National Assembly of Pakistan
The National Assembly of Pakistan is the lower house of the bicameral Majlis-e-Shura, which also compromises the President of Pakistan and Senate . The National Assembly and the Senate both convene at Parliament House in Islamabad...

. A new Prime Minister was appointed after much political wrangling, Zafarullah Khan Jamali
Zafarullah Khan Jamali
Mir Zafarullah Khan Jamali was the 13th Prime Minister of Pakistan and former Chairman of the Pakistan Hockey Federation.-Early life:Born in Baluchistan, Jamali was the second Baluch Prime Minister of Pakistan...

 of the Pakistan Muslim League (Q)
Pakistan Muslim League (Q)
The Pakistan Muslim League or officially Pakistan Muslim League is a centrist, modern political party in Pakistan. The present form of PML-Q was formed prior to 2002 general elections....

, a pro-Musharraf political party.

In December 2003, the National Assembly passed the Seventeenth Amendment
Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution Act, 2003 was an amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan passed in December 2003, after over a year of political wrangling between supporters and opponents of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf....

, partially restoring the power of the President to dissolve the National Assembly (and thus dismiss the Prime Minister), but making the dissolution subject to Supreme Court
Supreme Court of Pakistan
The Supreme Court is the apex court in Pakistan's judicial hierarchy, the final arbiter of legal and constitutional disputes. The Supreme Court has a permanent seat in Islamabad. It has number of Branch Registries where cases are heard. It has a number of de jure powers which are outlined in the...

 approval.

Jamali resigned on June 26, 2004. Interim prime minister Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain
Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain
Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain is a politician from Pakistan who was the Prime Minister of that country from June 30, 2004 until August 28 2004...

 nominated the Finance minister
Finance Minister of Pakistan
The Finance Minister of Pakistan heads the Ministry of Finance and serves in the Prime Minister's cabinet. The Minister is required to be a member of the Parliament.The current finance minister is Abdul Hafeez Shaikh...

, former Citibank
Citibank
Citibank, a major international bank, is the consumer banking arm of financial services giant Citigroup. Citibank was founded in 1812 as the City Bank of New York, later First National City Bank of New York...

 Vice-President Shaukat Aziz
Shaukat Aziz
Shaukat Aziz is a world acclaimed Pakistani economist who was the 15th Prime Minister of Pakistan from May 20, 2004 to 15 November 2007 in a joint military government led by General Pervez Musharraf. A Citibank executive, Aziz returned to Pakistan from the United States to be became Finance...

, to the post. Aziz was elected Prime Minister on August 28, 2004, by a vote of 191 to 151 in the National Assembly. In 2003, Musharraf passed the 17th Amendment
Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution Act, 2003 was an amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan passed in December 2003, after over a year of political wrangling between supporters and opponents of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf....

 which gave the President more powers then the Prime minister, and shifted Pakistan's parliamentary system of semi-Presidential system. During 2006 till the parliamentary elections in 2008, Yousaf Raza Gillani became the Prime minister and through his elected lawmakers demanded Musharraf to imposed the 1973 constitution at its real position, and dissolved the 17th Amendment, which the President denied. More and more support to suspend the semi-presidential system began to take place in successive years which Musharraf continued to denied. Following the successful movement to impeach
Movement to impeach Pervez Musharraf
The movement to impeach Pervez Musharraf was an August 2008 attempt by the Pakistan Peoples Party , the Pakistan Muslim League , Awami National Party , and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam to force Pakistan's President Pervez Musharraf out of office....

 the President, Musharraf resigned and Zardari became the elected President of the country. In 2010, finally lawmakers drafted and successfully and unanimously passed the 18th Amendment
Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan
Amendment XVIII of the Constitution of Pakistan, was passed by the National Assembly of Pakistan on April 8, 2010, removing the power of the President of Pakistan to dissolve the Parliament unilaterally, turning Pakistan from a semi-presidential to a parliamentary republic, and renaming...

, turning back the country to parliamentary democracy republic. The 18th Amendment also removed the power of the President of Pakistan to dissolve the Parliament unilaterally. This amendment sweeped the powers amassed by the Presidency under former Presidents General Pervez Musharraf and General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq and to ease political instability in Pakistan.

List of Prime Ministers of Pakistan




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