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March 14, 2018

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Speaker sets precedent by walking out of NA

ISLAMABAD: The Speaker National Assembly (NA) Ayaz Sadiq on Tuesday set a precedent in the history of parliament by staging a walkout from the proceedings over the absence of Interior Ministry officials.

The speaker, while announcing to walk out of proceedings of the House, said he would not chair any session and continue staging walkout of the National Assembly proceedings daily till the prime minister in writing gives assurance that officials of concerned ministries remain present in the hall. “I cannot tolerate disrespect of parliament at any cost and therefore I am staging a walkout from the proceedings,” saidSpeaker Ayaz Sadiq over the absence of Interior Ministry officials in the Officials’ Gallery.

Normally, the concerned ministry officials sit in the Visitor’s Gallery during the parliamentary business related to their ministry. The speaker decided to take the extreme step due to absence of officials during a calling attention notice related to the Ministry of Interior. At that time, neither the interior minister nor the parliamentary secretary was present in the National Assembly hall.

Ayaz Sadiq in the past had been passing strict orders against federal secretaries of different ministries and other senior officials for not turning at Officials’ Galleries during the parliamentary business related to them.

Following the speaker’s walkout, Deputy Speaker Murtaza Javed Abbasi chaired the proceedings of the House. Later, the Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal also turned up to respond to the calling attention notice.

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