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Shut up or pack up, NA speaker tells independent lawmaker

ISLAMABAD: Controversy over Fata reforms led to an ugly scene in the National Assembly when the otherwise calm speaker threatened to use security to remove an independent MNA representing the tribal areas.

The head of Pukhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP) Mahmood Khan Achakzai made remarks on the floor of the House on Thursday saying that implementing Fata reforms might stir an international controversy as the FCR was an agreement signed between the British Raj-era government of India and the Afghan government.

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The remarks sparked a protest by Members from the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Pakistan Peoples Party, and independents from Fata.
National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq tried in vain to bring order in the house.

Fata MNA Shah Ji Gul Afridi attempted to convey his observation over the issue without a mic, drawing the speaker’s ire.

“If you do not calm down I will throw you out [of the house],” Sadiq eventually said after several directions to maintain order in the House.

Afridi, who is a strong supporter of Fata reforms, told The Express Tribune that he wanted to put forward Fata’s point of view when the protests started.

“The speaker threatened to remove me from the house after disorder began. I was just trying to speak on the issue because I am a representative of the area. But instead of giving me a chance to speak I was threatened,” he said.

I was ready to raise this issue but I had no opportunity to do so as the session was prorogued,” he added while promising to bring up the issue again in the next session.

Earlier, the question-hour session was postponed to discuss the reforms. Foreign Affairs Adviser Sartaj Aziz was scheduled to issue a policy statement on the firing in Chaman by Afghan forces earlier this month.

Opposition Leader Khursheed Shah strongly criticised the lack of consensus among the government’s allies on Fata reforms. The opposition parties also expressed reservations on the replacement of FCR Law by the Riwaj law.

The post Shut up or pack up, NA speaker tells independent lawmaker appeared first on The Express Tribune.

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