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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Bhutto party nominate Pakistan's next Prime Minister: spokesman

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad, March 23, IRNA
Pakistan-New PM
The party of assassinated leader Benazir Bhutto on Saturday nominated Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani candidate to become Pakistan's next prime minister, the party Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari announced.

"I have great pleasure to announce the name of Makhdoom Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani to accept the heavy responsibility to lead the coalition and the nation," Zardari said in a statement read out by the party's spokesman Farhatullah Babar.

"The PPP and the coalition partners have completed consultations to announce the nominee for the office of the Prime Minister," the statement quoted Zardari as saying.

He said that the PPP after holding consultations within the PPP, with the coalition partners with the chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and consensus was achieved in nominating for the office of the Prime Minister.

Gilani, former Speaker National Assembly and former federal minister, was born on June 9th 1952 in Karachi, according to his family.

He had been the Speaker of the National Assembly during the second government of Benazir Bhutto from October 17, 1993 to February 16, 1997.

Gillani, who belongs to Multan in Punjab, is currently the Vice President of the Pakistan Peoples Party.

He is considered very close to Asif Zardari as he had been close to Benazir Bhutto.

He has been elected various times as Member of the National Assembly from Multan.

He was also elected MP on February 18, 2008.

Gillani was arrested in Feb 2001 over charges of misuse of authority as a speaker.

He was released in 2005 from four years in jail.

He wrote a book while in prison and the book was well received across the country.

Gilani, who was the 15th Speaker of National Assembly, is from a landowning family in Punjab province, Pakistan's political heartland.

He has been elected various times as Member National Assembly from Multan.

Gillani was arrested in Feb 2001 over charges of misuse of authority.

He has written a book while in prison and the book was well received across the country.

He contested in 1985 for the National Assembly and had won in a party-less elections and had served as a minister in the cabinet of former Prime Minister Muhammad Khan Junejo (84-87).

He was again elected on a PPP ticket in 1988.

Accordingly, he served in the Benazir cabinet as Housing and Works minister.

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