Pakistan leader of opposition to be decided during National Assembly session tomorrow
Pakistan's leader of the opposition is likely to be decided during the first National Assembly session on Monday under the new Shehbaz Sharif-led government.
Pakistan's leader of the opposition is likely to be decided during the first National Assembly session on Monday under the new Shehbaz Sharif-led government. President Arif Alvi has summoned the National Assembly session tomorrow at 4 pm. It will be the first session of the House after the ouster of the former Prime Minister Imran Khan-led Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government, Geo TV reported on Sunday.
The Dawn newspaper said that the house will decide the leader of the opposition from amongst nearly two dozen defiant lawmakers of the PTI. It further said, citing sources, that Noor Alam Khan and Raja Riaz were the main contenders for the slot and both of them had already submitted formal requests to the speaker with the signatures of their colleagues.
The session will be headed by the newly elected NA speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf. The agenda of the session is expected to be released by today evening. Reports said that it is a challenge for the assembly to appoint an opposition leader in the House following the mass resignations of 123 PTI lawmakers.
The speaker was likely to start the process of verification of the resignations submitted by PTI MNAs by calling them in his chamber individually or in the groups during the current session, the Dawn reported, citing sources. Around two dozen MNAs belonging to the former ruling party had already reportedly approached him seeking a meeting to clarify their stance, it added.
It further said, citing the sources that a majority of the resignations submitted by the PTI lawmakers were not handwritten and had a similar text printed on the party's letterhead. Sources said that the secretariat staff doubted the signatures of some members on the resignation letters as they did not match those on the assembly roll. The PTI MNAs tendered a mass resignation in the assembly just minutes before the PM's election on April 11. The decision was taken at the PTI's parliamentary party meeting, presided over by chairman Imran Khan, and the resignation was announced by vice-chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi.
Former deputy speaker Qasim Suri had immediately accepted the resignations and directed the secretariat to issue a notification, the Dawn reported. On April 14, the PTI had through social media released the secretariat's notification declaring that 123 party MNAs "resigned from their seats by writing under their hand" to the speaker.
The notification, signed by NA Secretary Tahir Hussain, had declared that after submission of the resignations their seats had become vacant in terms of Article 64(1) of the Constitution, with effect from April 11. (ANI)
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