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PTI Accuses Joint Opposition For Horse Trading in NA

Web Desk (August 14, 2018): The election for Speaker and Deputy Speaker is just around the corner. It will be held in the National Assembly tomorrow. Both PTI led alliance and PML N, PPP, MMA led joint opposition are ready to face the first political fight inside the parliament.

The deadline for the submission of nomination papers for slots has already ended today. Former KP speaker Asad Qaiser and Qasim Suri from PTI will compete with Pakistan Peoples Party’s very senior politician and former opposition leader Syed Khursheed Shah and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl’s Asad Mehmood. The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has accused opposition of trying to lure some of its lawmakers away by making “lucrative offers” for their votes in the election for the posts of the speaker and deputy speaker of the National Assembly.

PTI leaders are worried mainly because of two reasons – the secret balloting and slim majority it holds over the combined opposition’s total strength.

PTI’s Vice-Chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi warned that “it will be unfortunate if the voting pattern witnessed during the Senate election is repeated”.

“It is everyone’s right to seek lawmakers’ support in favour of a candidate, but we do not want anyone to buy vote(s),” Qureshi said.“PTI has the required numbers. We are confident that our nominees will win if MNAs voted in accordance with their conscience,” he said, adding that the opposition alliance was unnatural and would not last long.

PTI’s spokesperson Fawad Chaudhry said: “PTI knows that some MNAs have been approached in connection with the election for the posts of the speaker and deputy speaker,” he said, adding the party would conduct an inquiry into the affair.

Another senior party leader said that PTI’s allies complained that representatives of the combined opposition had made overtures for securing votes of their MNAs.

He said after receiving these reports, PTI leaders were re-engaging with their allies, holding talks to avoid any surprise outcome in the election.PTI and the joint opposition – PPP, PML-N and MMA – now had equal votes in the National Assembly after PTI leaders vacated various seats they had won in the general election.

Earlier, after submitting nomination papers for the election of Speaker at the National Assembly Secretariat he spoke to media and said that he is confident of his victory in the election. He pointed out that he is member of the parliament for over three decades and he has good relations with the elected representatives.

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Earlier, Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA) on Tuesday announced to fully support the PTI’s Candidate for the elections of the speaker, deputy speaker and the leader of the house.

GDA leaders Ghauz Bux Mehar and Fehmida Mirza announced their support following the talks with a PTI delegation led by its candidate for speaker Asad Qaiser in Islamabad.

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Later talking to the media persons, Fehmida Mirza appreciated the PTI for nominating candidates from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan for the slots of the speaker and the deputy speaker.

She said such steps will help address sense of deprivation of smaller provinces. She said we will collectively work for a strong federation.

In his remarks on the occasion, Asad Qaiser thanked the GDA leadership for their support.

Earlier, on Monday, newly elected MNAs and MPAs took oath in the National Assembly and respective provincial assemblies.

The National Assembly session marked the third consecutive democratic transition of power in Pakistan. Outgoing NA speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq administered oath to the newly-elected members. This was followed by signing of the ‘Roll of Members’.

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A total of 324 MNAs took the oath, with five more yet to do so. PTI chairperson Imran Khan, who is set to become the country’s next prime minister, was among those sworn in, along with other prominent leaders including PPP’s Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Asif Zardari, and PML-N president Shehbaz Sharif.

Strict security arrangements were made for the occasion as at least a thousand security men were deployed in and outside the parliament building.

The Constitution makes it mandatory to convene NA session within 21 days of general elections. After the oath-taking ceremony, the speaker prorogued the NA session until August 15, when the new speaker and deputy speaker of the assembly will be elected.

Related News:

Qasim Suri Submits Nomination Papers For Deputy Speaker NA

Shah Submits Nomination Papers For NA Speaker-ship