ECP’s ruling does not affect Punjab govt: Info Minister

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ISLAMABAD: Following the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) decision of unseating 25 dissident members belonging to the PTI, Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb said the decision does not affect the Punjab government. The information minister criticised the PTI and said that the party Chairman Imran Khan was earlier hurling abuses at the commission and was asking his followers to attack its office, but now — after receiving a decision in his party’s favour — he is all praises for the ECP.
She emphasised that the decision was “only applied to the 25 dissident PTI members”.
Aurangzeb said that the unseating of these 24 members does not affect Chief Minister Punjab Hamza Shahbaz, elections, and the Punjab government as the allied parties already have the votes of 177 members.
Berating the former, PTI-led government, the PML-N leader said that “these are the people who want to cling on to power no matter how much they hurt the country’s situation”.
She further said that the dissident members are those who showed a lack of confidence in their party’s decision and decided to vote for someone else, adding that the PTI’s defecting parliamentarians voted against Khan publicly.
The information minister went on to say that the dissident members were eligible to cast their votes in the no-confidence motion. “They knew about the consequences and voted against their party and in favour of the nation,” she said.
She added that those 25 members have not been unseated but their action is akin to a slap on Khan’s face. “They have the right to challenge the ECP’s decision,” said the information minister.
Criticising the Imran Khan-led government, the PML-N leader further maintained that it “looted the nation for four years and benefitted the cartels and mafias.”
Aurangzeb said that Khan should be held accountable in the foreign-funding case and should also clarify the position of his wife’s friend, Farah Gogi, who has been accused of corruption.
She added that the decision regarding the foreign-funding case should be announced within a day, after which, a ban should be imposed on the PTI.
The information minister also claimed that the people of Pakistan have rejected the PTI.
“The PTI will not find anyone to give tickets to so that they could contest the elections in Punjab,” added the information minister.
Earlier, the ECP unseated 25 dissident members of PTI while announcing its verdict in a case pertaining to the Punjab Assembly.
The ECP announced the unanimous verdict while accepting the reference against PTI dissidents who voted for Hamza Shahbaz in the election of Punjab chief minister, sent by Punjab Assembly Speaker Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi.
“MPAs defected from the party by voting in favour of Hamza Shahbaz,” the ECP said in the verdict. –Agencies