PTI ‘knocked out’ of National Assembly as speaker approves 43 more resignations

All but two active PTI lawmakers remain part of National Assembly
<p>Photo: File</p>

Photo: File

The National Assembly (NA) Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf on Tuesday approved the resignations of another 43 lawmakers of the opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

The development comes a day after, 45 PTI MNAs requested to withdraw their resignations, out of which 43 members’ resignations were accepted today.

NA Secretariat on Tuesday stated that the members were called several times for verification of their resignations.

The secretariat has now sent the accepted resignations to Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to de-seat the MNAs.

Once the members are de-notified, none of the resigned PTI MNAs will remain part of the NA.

Earlier, 70 resignations had been accepted by NA speaker in two phases and the tally adds another 43 now.

A total of 131 MNAs had submitted resignations minutes before the election of Shehbaz Sharif as the prime minister in April last year.

Subsequently, NA Speaker Ashraf accepted only 11 of the resignations, stating that the remaining lawmakers would be summoned individually for verification.

After stalling the process for eight months, Ashraf accepted the resignations of 34 PTI lawmakers on January 17 and 35 on January 20, including Awami Muslim League (AML) chief Sheikh Rashid.

The legislature only comprises 211 lawmakers including 20 dissidents of PTI. Four PTI members including Imran Khan did not take oath after winning by-election while four are on ‘long leaves’ without resigning.

The move came after the threats from the PTI to return to parliament only to foil a vote of confidence, which the party hoped President Dr Arif Alvi would seek from Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

Pakistan closer to elections now: Fawad

In a series of tweets, PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry stated that the party had decided to return to the NA in “limited numbers” to remove opposition leader Raja Riaz. Or else, this National Assembly had no representative status left for us to return to it; he added.

PTI leader tweeted that 40% of the seats of the lower house have become vacant. Now, Pakistan had come closer to the elections.

He said that Shehbaz Sharif government had lost support of 172 members required to form the government, and it was relying on the lotas of PTI.

He added that the only solution to this crisis is general elections.

ECP

national assembly

PTI RESIGNATIONS

Raja Pervez Ashraf

Tabool ads will show in this div