SHC suspends resignations of PTI lawmakers

The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Tuesday postponed an ECP notification accepting the resignations of nine of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party’s MNAs, granting the party interim reprieve.

Nine PTI MNAs appealed against the acceptance of their resignations before a two-member panel led by SHC Chairman Judge Ahmed Ali Shaikh.

The party submitted mass resignations in opposition to the removal of former Prime Minister Imran Khan by a National Assembly vote of no confidence in April of last year.

While the resignations were initially accepted by the deputy speaker and PTI leader Qasim Suri, the current speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf later declared that he would verify each resignation individually, starting the process of accepting them in stages.

At the hearing, PTI Sindh President and former federal minister Ali Zaidi asserted that the resignations had only been accepted because the government wanted to hand-pick the opposition leader for the lower house.

He criticized the speaker, saying that while “the speaker accepted resignations predating his oath [as speaker] only when it came to the choosing of the leader of the opposition,” the resignations were submitted on April 11 and accepted on January 17.

“Matters of national significance should not be decided to gratify individual egos,” Zaidi continued.