DPG Policy Brief

Pakistan’s General Election 2024

Date: December 05, 2023
Pakistan has experienced continuous political instability over the past decade, marked by recurring cycles of political manoeuvring between the civilian leadership, the military establishment and the judiciary.  In this brief, the author examines the interplay between these three power centres since the last general election in 2014, as each has tried to manipulate the others in order to dominate the domestic balance of power.

The Election Commission of Pakistan has set February 8, 2024 as the date for the next general election, which will take place as Pakistan’s traditional allies distance themselves, its economy is on the ropes, and the internal security situation is worsening.  The author examines at length the political context surrounding the upcoming election, the respective roles of the leading political parties and the military establishment, and the probable scenarios. 

The author concludes that political instability in Pakistan will persist unless there is a structural change in the long-standing trend where personal and institutional ambitions have overshadowed national interests.  Elections cannot be held solely to fulfil a constitutional requirement and benefit the politico-military elites.   

To read this Policy Brief Vol. VIII, Issue 28, please see the PDF.