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ECP failed miserably in its responsibilities: Ex-Speaker NA Ayaz Sadiq

ISLAMABAD: Former Speaker National Assembly and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Ayaz Sadiq on Wednesday said the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) did not fulfill its responsibilities adequately and it was the responsibility of the Parliament to hold them accountable.

Addressing the Lower House after he stepped down, Ayaz Sadiq congratulated the new Speaker Asad Qaiser for being elected on the post, and opposition leader Khursheed Shah for a good competition keeping in line with parliamentary procedures.

He also thanked those parties who elected him as the Speaker in 2013 particularly his party and for overseeing a peaceful a democratic transition of power in Parliament.

The former NA speaker said that he will not use words which will be condescending or derogatory towards the designation of the speaker.

He said that it was quite disheartening for him when the parliament members were called ‘thieves’, adding that any difference of opinion should be addressed in a respectful way.

Sadiq further said he dedicated a lot of his time and efforts towards the opposition but was still accused of leaning more towards the government in his tenure.

He also thanked the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) for supporting him during the 2014 sit-in when resignations were submitted by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) members.

He said he didn’t accept the resignations as he does not believe the fate of elected representatives can be decided by a small section of Parliament and was vindicated in the courts as well.

He said that the ECP didn’t carry out its responsibilities adequately despite the widening power relegated in the Election Act 2017.

“Shireen Mazari cannot be a part of the government and will play the role of the opposition. She is a like an unguided missile,” he said, as the new Speaker reminded him the matter has been resolved.

He said the Election Act was made in consultation with all parties but the selection of commission could not be made properly, and the ECP had failed to train the Returning Officers properly despite receiving twenty billion rupees.

He said this raises a question park on the performance of the ECP which had failed miserably, and it was the responsibility of the parliament to decide to hold them accountable, adding that it was necessary to unite on national issues.

Earlier Sadiq chaired the session of the National Assembly and administered oath to the new Speaker Asad Qaiser. He said the previous assembly performed in an excellent manner and expressed confidence the government and opposition will continue to work together in national interest.

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