Latest Pakistan news: Qasim Khan Suri resigned as deputy speaker of Pakistan’s National Assembly on Saturday, less than an hour before a session of the House where voting on a no-trust motion against him was to take place for favouring the previous government-led by Imran Khan. Meanwhile, PPP’s Raja Pervaiz Ashraf has been elected as National Assembly speaker
Suri from Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party had been functioning as the acting speaker following the resignation of Speaker Asad Qaiser, who resigned on April 9 stating that he cannot hold a vote of no-confidence against Khan.
Sharing a copy of his resignation on Twitter, Suri said his move signified his association with the vision of his party, the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), and democracy.
“We will never compromise on Pakistan’s sovereignty and integrity. We will fight for the country’s interests and independence. We will go to any length to protect Pakistan,” the 53-year-old politician tweeted.
Following Suri’s resignation, the no-confidence motion holds no value, while the newly-elected speaker will decide on whether to accept the resignation or not, Geo TV reported.
Suri faced severe criticism in recent days over a contentious April 3 ruling to dismiss a no-confidence motion against former prime minister Khan and his decision to defer the session scheduled for the NA speaker’s election from April 16 to April 22.
Just before the election of Shehbaz Sharif as the new prime minister of Pakistan on April 11, ousted prime minister Khan’s party lawmakers decided to resign from the National Assembly.
Khan’s PTI on Thursday announced that Suri had accepted the resignations of 123 lawmakers and the National Assembly (NA) Secretariat had also issued a notification on the issue.
The PPP and the PML-N alleged that Suri had put pressure on the National Assembly Secretariat to accept the resignations.
In line with the National Assembly rules, immediately after the election of the speaker, the assembly shall proceed to elect a deputy speaker and once elected, he will take oath before the assembly before entering office.
Shahida Akhtar Ali of Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl, another coalition partner, is said to be among the front runners for the deputy speaker’s post.
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