ISLAMABAD: Former Prime Minister and senior leader of Pakistan People Party (PPP) Raja Pervez Ashraf was elected unopposed as the speaker of the National Assembly Saturday

The NA speaker’s office fell vacant on April 9 when PTI’s Asad Qaiser resigned, stating that he can not hold voting on the no-confidence against the then-prime minister Imran Khan, which he said, was a part of a “foreign conspiracy” against the PTI government.

Raja Pervez Ashraf took oath as the 22nd NA speaker shortly after being elected unopposed as no other member submitted nomination papers. Panel of Chairman Ayyas Sadiq announced his name as next Speaker National Assembly.

After resignation of Qasim Suri as Deputy Speaker hours before initiating voting on no confidence against him in the Parliament, Ayaz Sadiq, chaired the session. He said there’s no need for voting on the motion now. 

He stated that the courts have specified the resignation process according to which it is to be presented to the speaker in presence of witnesses.

I hope you bury what took place earlier: Shehbaz

Congratulating the newly-elected speaker, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, while speaking on the floor of the NA, hoped that Ashraf would bury what took place in the assembly in the last four years.

“You are an experienced politician. I congratulate you from the depth of my heart. You have also served the country as the prime minister,” the prime minister said.

‘Intuitions returning towards their constitutional role’

PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari extended his congratulation to Raja Pervez Ashraf on becoming the 22nd speaker of the lower house.

Referring to the recent political turmoil in the country, Bilawal, while speaking on the floor of the house, said that a mockery was made of the constitution and the house during the last few days. Pakistan’s image was maligned, he added.

“The selected prime minister, who was imposed on the house, has been removed. We are a coalition government now,” he said, adding that the change brought a ray of hope for the people. Addressing Shehbaz Sharif, the PPP leader said: “Mr prime minister all the institutions and the nation are looking towards you.”

PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari addressing a session of the National Assembly in Islamabad, on April 16, 2022. — Twitter/NAofPakistan

“Those institutions who had been controversial, are now returning towards their constitutional role,” said Bilawal.

The PPP leader claimed that no power could stop Pakistan from progressing and developing.

Speaking on the occasion, he, on the behalf of the house, expresses deep grief and condoled on the sad demise of Bilquis Bano Edhi, the wife of renowned humanitarian and philanthropist Abdul Sattar Edhi. Meanwhile, he tabled a motion to pay tribute to Bilquis Bano Edhi, which was approved unanimously by the house.

PTI lawmakers asked to submit resignation again

In his opening note soon after taking the oath, newly elected NA Speaker Raja Pervez Ashraf thanked Bilawal and former president Asif Ali Zardari for nominating him for the slot. He also thanked PM Shehbaz Sharif and the allied parties for reposing their confidence in him.

He maintained that earning more respect and honour for the House will be his top priority. The speaker vowed that he will act in an impartial manner and added that the voice of the opposition will not be suppressed but respected. He maintained that they should not divide the nation.

Newly elected National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervez Ashraf addressing a session of the National Assembly in Islamabad, on April 16, 2022. — Twitter/NAofPakistan

The NA speaker said that all the institutions should co-operate with each other while keeping themselves within their constitutional ambit.

Raja Pervez Ashraf said that he will look into the matters of the former NA deputy speaker’s ruling and the resignations of the PTI members as per the rules.

The NA speaker directed to present the resignation of PTI’s lawmakers before him.

Loadshedding in Pakistan

Talking before the election of the speaker, PM Shehbaz brought it to the house’s notice that he held several meetings with energy and petroleum officials in light of the load-shedding across the country.

He said that the current capacity to produce electricity was enough for the country, but unfortunately, the PTI-led government did not follow up on the projects that had started during Nawaz Sharif’s tenure.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif speaks during a session of the National Assembly in Islamabad, on April 16, 2022. — PID

The prime minister said it was due to the PTI government’s “gross management and incompetence” that is causing load-shedding in the country and nothing else.

“This was the most incompetent and corrupt government,” he said lashing out at the Imran Khan-led government. Shehbaz said had Nawaz and Abbasi not struck energy deals with Qatar, then the power crisis would have deepened today as the PTI meet the energy needs.

Talking about the flyover being constructed near the Rawal Chowk in Islamabad, he said it was written on its contract that the project was expected to be completed within 24 months, but due to PTI’s government, it was still not complete.

“…we made such projects within 72 hours,” he said. Shehbaz hoped that the government could resolve the issues of the country.

By adminmy

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