National Assembly (NA) Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq on Friday suspended the memberships of two lawmakers from the PTI-Sunni Ittehad Council alliance, Jamshed Ahmad Khan Dasti and Muhammad Iqbal Khan, for the current NA session due to their use of “abusive language” during the president’s parliamentary address.

Presi­dent Asif Ali Zardari had attempted to make a case for political reconciliation in his Thursday address to a joint session of parliament even as PTI lawmakers responded to his overture with a full-throated ruckus, that continued throughout his speech.

During the speech, PTI members had clamoured in front of the dais, shouting “Go Zardari Go” throughout. At times, the president had seemed to lose his train of thought, but remained composed and only acknowledged the protesters with a smile, ending his speech with a victory sign.

The current session is the fourth one of the present assembly. It was adjourned to meet again on April 22 at 5pm, as per the NA website.

In today’s session, the NA adopted a motion introduced by Sadiq regarding the suspension of the two MNAs for their conduct during the president’s speech.

The motion said: “Jamshed Dasti and Muhammad Iqbal MNAs used abusive language and approached the dais of the speaker in a threatening manner, which is unacceptable.”

The motion further detailed their disruptive behaviour, including “blowing whistles and trumpets, chanting objectionable slogans, and displaying banners and placards”, saying that such actions violated the sanctity of the house and the rules outlined in the Rules of Procedure of Conduct of Business International 2007.

Citing Rule 21 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the NA read with Rule 33 of the Parliament Joint Sitting Rules 1973, the NA speaker named them and ordered the withdrawal of their membership from the assembly’s current session.

This decision was made in accordance with the established rules and regulations to maintain the decorum and integrity of parliamentary proceedings.

The motion was passed after a majority of voice votes.

Iqbal told Geo News that he would continue his protest despite the suspension. “We will go to every extent for the rule of law and the Constitution in this country and the elimination of injustice,” he said.

Meanwhile, PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari criticised Thursday’s actions and ruckus by the opposition, saying it had caused the NA speaker to take steps to suspend two MNAs.

“This was necessary to set a precedent that we should work within the limits of the rules of Parliament [and in that case] we welcome the opposition and its criticism.”

The PPP chairman hoped that the situation would improve after Sadiq’s steps and lawmakers would fulfil their roles.


Additional reporting by Irfan Sadozai.

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