Back then, this amounted to the only democratically elected parliament to fully complete its tenure in the history of Pakistan from 2003–2008, albeit under Musharraf. The second complete parliamentary term was completed by the PPP led government from 2008–2013 which had in fact passed the 18th Amendment. However, this 2008–2013 term is often touted to be the first complete democratic change of power without a military president or a coup de etat in Pakistan.
Recognition of the children's right to education and insertion of a new section under Article 25A to provide constitutional guarantee that state will provide free and compulsory education to all girls and boys up to age 16.
The power to dissolve the parliament was withdrawn from the President.
292 of the 342 members of the National Assembly, the lower house of Parliament, voted in favour of the amendment. The amendment turns the President into a ceremonial head of state and transfers power to the Prime Minister, and removes the limit on a Prime Minister serving more than two terms, opening the way for Nawaz Sharif to run again. The North-West Frontier Province is renamed Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in accordance with the wishes of its Pashtun-majority population. Among other changes, courts will no longer be able to endorse suspensions of the constitution, a judicial commission will appoint judges, and the president will no longer be able to appoint the head of the Election Commission. The bill also enhances provincial autonomy. The President will no longer be able to declare emergency rule in any province unilaterally.
Ahmed Kurd, former president of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan, said "We fully support the 18th Amendment. It is tantamount to the overhauling of the constitution, which had been subverted by military dictators since its inception. In the past, parliaments have just been 'rubber stamps', whereas the present parliament seemed to be well aware of its obligations, and therefore, was 'throwing out' the 'unconstitutional' amendments."