Aseefa Bhutto-Zardari sworn in as MNA amid opposition ruckus

Published April 15, 2024
Aseefa Bhutto Zardari takes her oath of office at the National Assembly in Islamabad on April 15. — National Assembly X
Aseefa Bhutto Zardari takes her oath of office at the National Assembly in Islamabad on April 15. — National Assembly X

Political debutante Aseefa Bhutto-Zardari was sworn in as a member of the National Assembly (MNA) on Monday in a session marred by ruckus from the opposition benches.

Aseefa was elected unopposed as an MNA from NA-207 Shaheed Benazirabad (formerly Nawabshah) on March 29. The seat was vacated by her father Asif Ali Zardari after he was elected president.

She arrived at the Parliament earlier in the day with her brother and PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari.

She was administered her oath by NA Speaker Ayaz Sadiq amid sloganeering by MNAs associated with the PTI, which led to a walkout by treasury lawmakers in protest against the ruckus.

The PTI’s protest was regarding the allegation that its candidate for NA 207 — Ghulam Mustafa Rind — was arrested by the Sakrand police. The party had said that Rind was its representative who was supposed to contest against Aseefa in the by-elections.

Meanwhile, the PPP termed the occasion a “historic moment”.

Aseefa’s sister Bakhtawar Bhutto-Zardari celebrated her sister’s ascension. saying that the event was a “surreal and proud moment for our family”.

PPP Central Information Secretary Faisal Karim Kundi also called Aseefa’s swearing in a “historic moment for Pakistan’s parliamentary democracy”.

Sindh Transport Minister Sharjeel Memon was also among those extending congratulations to the first-time MNA.

Aseefa holds a bachelor’s degree in politics and sociology and a master’s in global health and development. She initially served as a goodwill ambassador for polio eradication in 2012 which made her face familiar among masses.

She played a pivotal role in politics in the general elections when she ran an aggressive election campaign for her brother and other party candidates in Sanghar, Shaheed Benazirabad and Naushahro Feroze districts.

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