Former Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif.
Dubai: Pakistani voters headed to the polls once again on Sunday, this time for the by-elections of the national and provincial assemblies. While it was trending on social media, what has caught everyone’s attention is former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s failed attempt at voting.
He was not allowed to vote in Sunday’s by-election after he forgot to bring his identification card to the polling station, as stated in a report published by The Express Tribune, a Pakistan-based English newspaper.
Sharif and his daughter, Maryam, arrived minutes before the closing of polling at the Government College of Technology in Lahore to exercise their right to vote. His party’s supporters had gathered outside to welcome him and chanted slogans in his favour.
But, soon, pictures and video clips of him leaving the venue appeared on social media channels. And news broke that he was unable to cast his vote as he had forgotten his National Identity Card (NIC) at home.
On his official twitter account, Pakistani journalist Hamid Mir, @HamidMirPAK, shared the news: “Former PM Nawaz Sharif was not allowed to cast his vote because he was without his ID card.”
Former PM Nawaz Sharif was not allowed to cast his vote because he was without his ID card— Hamid Mir (@HamidMirPAK) October 14, 2018
Not only did this start a conversation on twitter, but many tweeps started mocking Sharif in regards to the situation.
Tweep @shazoonaz wrote: “Nawaz and Maryam shouting at the top of their voice that “vote koh izzat doh” (give respect to the vote). Maryam did not cast her vote, Nawaz thought he is above the law and didn’t bring his ID card, that’s how they treat the vote and this is how they give izzat (respect) to vote.”
Nawaz and Maryam shouting at top of their voice that “Vote koh izzat doh” Maryam did not cast her vote, Nawaz thought he is above the law and didn’t bring his ID card, that’s how they treat the vote and this is how they give izzat to vote.😂😂😂— shaz (@shazoonaz) October 15, 2018
@OfficialZohaibK tweeted in Urdu: “He can’t manage his ID card, how will he manage a country?”
Tweep @Xadeejournalist shared an image of Sharif at the polling station and wrote: “Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif stands like a student who is not allowed to sit in the examination room after leaving his CNIC at home. #ByElections”
Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif stands like a student who is not allowed to sit in the examination room after leaving his CNIC at home #ByElections pic.twitter.com/x6jDpgwSu9— Mubashir Zaidi (@Xadeejournalist) October 14, 2018
@WoShakhs added: “The real story is that a three-time PM is unaware of election rules and showed up to vote without his ID. Shameful.”
Many supported the polling officer’s decision to stop Sharif from voting. In their opinion, the law applies to all.
Tweep @_Mansoor_Ali posted: “I think the presiding officer should be applauded for not allowing Nawaz Sharif to cast his vote without a CNIC. Rules apply for everyone. No one is above the law.”
I think the presiding officer should be applauded for not allowing Nawaz Sharif to cast his vote without a CNIC. Rules apply for everyone – No one is above the law.— Mansoor Ali Khan (@_Mansoor_Ali) October 14, 2018
@AtaElahi agreed: “Makes sense. If any other person is not allowed, why should he be allowed to do that? It’s simple process, bring your ID card to vote.”
There were others who believed he should have been allowed to vote.
Tweep @Muhamma10049244 wrote: “The objective to check ID card before vote casting is to verify the identity of voter to prevent fake voting. Was Nawaz Sharif unknown to polling staff preventing him to cast vote?”
@ElMoeed added: “To be honest, it’s ok to forget the ID for someone of his stature. I think the vote should have been accepted. Because who doesn’t know Nawaz Sharif. But, maybe the fact that he was challenged is proof of naya (new) Pakistan.”