ISLAMABAD: Shibli Faraz, the leader of the house in the upper house of parliament, on Wednesday said the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) was working on a strategy to thwart the no-confidence bid against Senate chairman Sadiq Sanjrani and he was in touch with several opposition senators for this purpose.
“The opposition parties will need 53 senators to de-seat Sadiq Sanjrani. I don’t see that happening,” he told reporters at the Parliament House.
Faraz went on to point out that the opposition parties had not even been able to reach a consensus on a joint candidate for the post.
“The opposition is divided over the issue of a no-confidence motion against the Senate chairman. Many opposition senators are against the move,” he maintained.
“Many opposition senators are in touch with us and the result of the no-confidence motion may spring up a surprise for the opposition parties.
Faraz said he was against the use of money to buy off members for the Senate election.
“We have always opposed using money for horse trading in the democratic process,” he added.
PTI Senator Faisal Javed claimed that at least 12 or 13 senators of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) would not vote against Sanjrani.
“It is better if the opposition parties roll back their decision to de-seat the Senate chairman otherwise they will suffer a loss and embarrassment,” he added.
Javed further said PML-N senators, similar to what the party’s MPAs were feeling, were becoming increasingly disgruntled and the opposition camp was marred by internal rifts.
“Some senators of the PML-N are technically independent and are not obliged to vote,” he noted.
“The no-confidence motion will pave the way for a T20 match. The opposition is moving a no-confidence motion and then it will be our turn to do it.
The PTI senator said Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari in a tweet had declared Sanjrani’s election to the chairman’s seat as a win for Balochistan and the Centre.
“Bilawal should retweet that after moving a no-confidence motion against Sanjrani,” he added.
Earlier, some senators including those belonging to the tribal districts met the Senate chairman and assured him of their support.
They included senators Mirza Mohammad Afridi, Sajjad Turi, Momin Khan, Aurangzeb Khan, Hidayatullah, Kauda Babar, Fida Khan, Taj Afridi and Ateeq Sheikh.
They maintained that the opposition’s no-confidence move against the Senate chairman was actually a conspiracy against the upper house of the parliament and they would foil it for the sake of a strong federation.