NA Speaker accepts resignations of 43 more PTI MNAs


Islamabad: In another surprising move, the Speaker of the National Assembly, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, has accepted the resignations of 43 more Members of the National Assembly (MNAs) belonging to the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.

The development came days after the speaker accepted 69 MNAs of the forming ruling party last week, sensing their return to the lower house of the parliament.

Sources privy to the matter narrate that Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf had accepted the remaining resignation letters a few days ago and has sent a summary in this regard to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

It is pertinent to mention here that on Monday, a delegation of the remaining PTI lawmakers visited the parliament to meet the speaker to withdraw their resignations.

Senior PTI leader Asad Umar tweeted, saying that 44 MNAs of the PTI would withdraw their resignations as per the instructions of PTI Chairman Imran Khan as the NA speaker was not accepting the resignations of “all” PTI MNAs.

“The next step will be the nomination of the opposition leader,” Asad Umar had said.

Meanwhile, Fawad Chaudhry had said that the PTI MNAs withdrew their resignations from the speaker to give the posts of Leader of the Opposition and parliamentary party back to PTI.

He said that the purpose of taking back resignations was to get rid of the “fake opposition leader” and to bar the “turncoats” from voting for Prime Minister Shehbaz in a no-trust vote.

However, reacting to today’s step from the speaker, Fawad Chaudhry said that in a bid to save Raja Riaz — the current opposition leader — 40% of the seats have become vacant.

He said that the only solution to this crisis is “elections”. 

“How long will the government shy away from the people?”

Soon after the ouster of Imran Khan from the Prime Minister’s office in April this year, 123 MNAs of the PTI submitted their resignations en masse, out of which only 11 had been accepted by Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf last year.

However, last week Speaker of the National Assembly, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, accepted the resignations of 70 MNAs in total after Imran Khan had said that the PTI could “test” PM Shehbaz with a vote of confidence the way they — the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) — had tested Imran Khan last year.

69 of the denotified MNAs belonged to the PTI, while the other one was Sheikh Rashid Ahmed — founder and leader of the Awami Muslim League (AML) and an ally of Imran Khan.

After today’s move, the total number of PTI MNAs whose resignations have been accepted has crossed 120.