ISLAMABAD: In a National Assembly session which started after hours of delay, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi started his speech without referring to the custodian of the house as “Speaker” and instead started his speech by naming the speaker, ARY News reported.
“I am confused about terming you Mr Speaker or Ayaz Sadiq for if you play the role of a neutral refree you are my speaker but if you take ruling party’s pressure and try to suppress my voice then I will say I am seeing a PML-N loyalist in chair,” said Qureshi.
Amid verbal protest from PML-N members, Qureshi continued to speak and raised the issue of Panama papers and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s statement in court.
“You rejected our privilege motion without listening to our viewpoint. You allowed opposition member of one party (PPP) to speak on point of order but usurped the other party (PTI) right to speak,” said Qureshi.
Qureshi maintained that the matter upon which the PTI’s privilege motion is based, is not in any way sub-judice as PM’s “misleading statement” was in his parliament speech which is not under court’s consideration in the Panama papers case.
He also claimed that the PML-N lawmaker and Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique termed his party legislators “Ghunda” on record and should apologise for his conduct.
The PTI leader requested the Prime Minister to attend next session of the assembly and explain his statements.
The session was adjourned on Wednesday as it saw a ruckus after PTI leaders were not allowed to speak before ruling party legislator Khawaja Saad Rafique’s speech. The opposition’s privilege motions were also rejected by the speaker on the pretext that the matter (Panama papers) is sub-judice.
‘We ourselves don’t want Panama papers issue to stand unresolved’
As was decided amongst the members of the house, PML-N leader Khawaja Saad Rafique was allowed to speak after Qureshi’s speech but a JI leader Sahibzada Tariqullah disrupted his speech so Rafique allowed him to speak.
On his turn, the Railways Minister took back his words (Ghunda Gardi) from his Tuesday’s speech but also asked PTI members to take back their abusive words for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
“I expect you and your leader (Imran Khan) to apologise for their abusive language against parliament and our leader (Nawaz Sharif)” said Rafique.
About the opposition’s main argument, he said that parliament is not supreme court and whatever Nawaz Sharif said in his April 22 speech was a general statement while in the court the PM gave an elaborated version of the same statement, so the accusation of lying on the floor of the assembly is “incorrect”.
He maintained that the court will decide the future of Panama case and PML-N is eagerly waiting for that as it does not want to contest the next general election with the blot.
“We ourselves don’t want the Panama papers case to stand unresolved,” announced the minister.
He also advised PTI and PPP to bring their own house in order as they both are ruling Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Sindh and should also focus on their own governance.
Saad Rafique once again “requested” the PTI lawmakers to take part in legislation as they are “drawing salaries” as legislators.