Imran Khan’s party claims to have Pakistan coalition in place

Opponents alleged vote rigging after former cricket star came out on top in election

Former Pakistan cricket star Imran Khan's party says it has acquired the support of the politicians required to form a coalition government after winning this week's election.

Fawad Chaudhry, spokesman for Mr Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, did not say exactly how many politicians had agreed to join their future government, but that an announcement would be made when the National Assembly convenes next week.

Mr Chaudhry added that the party’s success in Wednesday’s general election meant the end of decades-long dynastic rule in Pakistan.

Pakistan's elections oversight body released its final results on Saturday, saying Mr Khan won 115 of 269 contested seats in the National Assembly, while his nearest rival, Shahbaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League, won 64 seats. Initially it said Mr Khan had won 116 seats.

Mr Khan’s party scooped up 16.86 million votes in a better-than-expected performance, with Mr Sharif’s group second with 12.89 million votes.

Officials from PTI (Pakistan Movement for Justice) had earlier said they were in talks with independent candidates and at least one other political party.

‘Pretty much there’

“We are pretty much there in the National Assembly... talks are going on with MQM as well,” Faisal Javed Khan, a senior PTI spokesman, said.

The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), has dominated politics in the port megacity of Karachi for decades, and won six seats in the general election after the party split with its longtime leader, Altaf Hussain.

He added that Mr Khan was expected to take the oath as prime minister around August 14th, which is Pakistan’s independence day.

The poll has been marred by long delays in counting and complaints of rigging by the Pakistan Muslim League. Some of the smaller religious parties had threatened street protests if the poll is not re-run.

Mr Khan has offered to investigate any claims of irregularities in the wake of Wednesday’s poll, which several other parties allege was skewed in favour of the former cricket hero by Pakistan’s powerful military.

European Union observers were critical of the political climate in the run up to the vote, saying there was not a level playing field. The United States voiced similar concerns. - AP/Reuters