Asif Ali Zardari
A file photo of Asif Ali Zardari. Image Credit: AFP

Islamabad: Pakistan's lawmakers elected Asif Ali Zardari on Saturday as the country’s president for the second time.

He is the widower of assassinated former premier Benazir Bhutto and the father of former foreign minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari.

Zardari secured 411 votes from national and provincial lawmakers. His opponent, Mehmood Khan Achakzai, who is backed by the party of imprisoned former Prime Minister Imran Khan, received 181 votes.

The Pakistani presidency is a largely ceremonial role. Zardari was previously in the job between 2008 and 2013.

He was the favourite to win on Saturday because of his alliance with Pakistan’s other political dynasty, the Sharifs, and his key role in talks to form a coalition government after the disputed national parliamentary election on February 8.