Gen. Pervez Musharraf easily won the election for president on Saturday, but an opposition boycott and pending hearings in the Supreme Court, which still has to decide on his eligibility to run for election in uniform, left him with an incomplete victory.
The vote, by national and provincial assemblies, ended up as a one-man race after other candidates withdrew. All opposition parties refused to take part, and only legislators from the ruling coalition, plus a few independents, voted.
General Musharraf won 98 percent of votes — 671 of the total of 685 ballots cast in the national and provincial assemblies were for him, and 8 were for one of his opponents, Wajihuddin Ahmed, a former Supreme Court judge. Under the electoral college system, General Musharraf got 384 votes of 702, more than 50 percent of the electoral college, according to unofficial calculations.
“This is a very welcome result,” the prime minister, Shaukat Aziz, told reporters in Parliament.
General Musharraf had been widely expected to be re-elected as the government coalition holds a majority in all but one provincial assembly. But the election will be recognized only if the Supreme Court, which is hearing challenges later this month to General Musharraf’s participation in the election, rules in his favor.