PTI gears up to attend joint sitting

After the suspension of the National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf’s acceptance of resignations of 43 PTI lawmakers by the Lahore High Court, the party has decided to attend the joint session of parliament scheduled for Monday subject to receiving the court order

The decision was taken at a party meeting held at the Parliament Lodges on Thursday

Moreover, the speaker said he had not yet received the LHC's order, adding that any future course of action would be determined only after he obtained it

Sources said the PTI meeting decided to go by the book and fulfil all legal requirements in this regard, as the members were of the opnion that there was no point in coming to parliament before getting the court order

On the other hand, the NA Secretariat asked the PTI members not to attend the session until the written order of the court was issued

In a video posted on Twitter by the NA’s official account, the speaker could be seen responding to a question about his views surrounding speculations that some of PTI’s MNAs might be interested in returning to the lower house

Without providing many details, Ashraf said as the LHC’s order was not in front of him, he could neither read it, nor had any details on the matter shared with him

“We have only heard from media reports that we have been made a party to the case; we have not received a notice for that yet,” he elaborated

“So, I believe, once the decision is received and we get a chance to read it and discuss it with our experts, we will then decide what the future course of action on our part should be,” he added

The speaker said being former members of the lower house, the PTI MNAs would be allowed to enter the NA premises, but would not have access to the assembly hall

Parliamentary sources said the PTI MNAs had been instructed to reach the NA on Friday (today)

On the arrival of the PTI MNAs, the speaker and government experts too have decided to hold a significant huddle on Friday

The sources said the 43 PTI MNAs had started reaching the federal capital and they had been asked to gather in the chamber of the party’s opposition leader in the Senate, Waseem Shahzad

There, they would wait for the LHC order to arrive, following which they would discuss the issue with the PTI’s legal experts, including Barrister Ali Zafar

For now, around 10 PTI MNAs are present in the Senate opposition leader’s chamber while several of them are waiting in the Parliament Lodges

There will be a meeting in the speaker’s office on Friday as well where the decision to allow the PTI MNAs into the House would be reviewed

The PTI had tendered en masse resignations in protest after its chairman Imran Khan was ousted from the office of the prime minister in April last year

Even though then deputy speaker Qasim Suri had accepted the resignations, the incumbent one  had re-initiated the phase-wise process of accepting them

Ashraf had insisted that each member must confirm their resignation in person

After months of delay, the resignations of the last lot of PTI MNAs were accepted in January, only to be challenged by the lawmakers claiming they had withdrawn their request and never confirmed them in person

On Wednesday, the LHC suspended the speaker and the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) de-notification and sought replies from the authorities concerned

Date:11-Feb-2023 Reference:View Original Link