Maryam Nawaz Poised to Become First Woman Chief Minister of Punjab, Pakistan

Maryam Nawaz Poised to Become First Woman Chief Minister of Punjab, Pakistan
Flickr (Khaleda Zia, 14 Oct 2017)


Hasom Jang

Pakistan Researcher, 

Global Human Rights Defence

Maryam Nawaz, daughter of three-time Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, is set to make history as the first woman Chief Minister of Pakistan's Punjab province. The inaugural session of the provincial legislature has been summoned, and Maryam, aged 50, is expected to lead the formation of the new government.

Having secured the position of Senior Vice President of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party, Maryam was nominated as the chief ministerial candidate for Punjab. The PML-N, led by Nawaz Sharif, secured 137 seats in the Punjab Assembly, while independents supported by former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) won 113 seats. Independents not backed by PTI have already aligned with the PML-N, giving them a substantial majority.

The Election Commission of Pakistan is anticipated to notify the allocation of reserved seats in the Provincial Assembly. However, the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC), supported by PTI, may not obtain reserved seats for women and minorities due to legal issues. This leaves the PML-N with a simple majority in Punjab.

Maryam Nawaz, in her capacity as the PML-N's candidate for Punjab Chief Minister, has already outlined her development plans for the province. She emphasized her commitment to combating corruption and politically-motivated vandalism, describing them as 'red lines' that her government will not allow anyone to cross.

In terms of her development agenda, Maryam pledged to usher in a new era of progress, particularly in the health, education, and IT sectors. She intends to establish five IT cities in Punjab, attract foreign investment, and provide interest-free loans to young entrepreneurs for their IT projects. In the health sector, her government aims to address the shortage of nurses, reintroduce health cards for free treatment of the poor, and ensure comprehensive medical services at major hospitals.

Maryam also emphasized her focus on education, with plans to run government schools through public-private partnerships and initiatives to bring all out-of-school children back to classrooms. Other commitments include the launch of Rescue '1122' service on motorways and the establishment of more Safe City projects in the province.

As Maryam Nawaz prepares to become the first woman Chief Minister of Punjab, she expressed gratitude for the people's mandate and vowed to live up to their expectations. She highlighted the importance of trust and support from the public, recognizing them as her real assets in serving the province. Maryam Nawaz's leadership signifies a historic moment for Pakistan as she steps into a prominent political role traditionally held by men.

Sources and further readings:

Bureau, A. N. (22 Feb 2024). Maryam Nawaz All Set To Become First Woman CM Of Pakistan’s Punjab Province.

Maryam Nawaz unveils development game plan for Punjab—Pakistan—DAWN.COM. Retrieved 21 Feb 2024,

Maryam Nawaz vows to “live up to” people’s expectations as Pakistan’s first woman CM. Retrieved 21 Feb 2024,