NA dissolution date not decided yet, clarifies Marriyum

Information minister says date to be decided in consultation with allied parties; decision to be officially announced

News Desk July 18, 2023
Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb addressing a press conference in Islamabad on April 7, 2023. PHOTO: PID

Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb has clarified that the date of dissolution of the National Assembly has not been decided yet amid reports that the two major parties in ruling coalition – PML-N and PPP – had agreed to dissolve the lower house on August 8.

“The date [of dissolution of National Assembly] will be decided in consultation with the PDM and allied parties,” Marriyum wrote on her official Twitter handle on Tuesday. “The decision will be officially announced,” she added.

The country is preparing for the upcoming general elections. The National Assembly and the remaining two provincial assemblies are set to complete their five-year term in August.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had announced recently that the government intended to exit before completing its full term, paving the way for the dissolution of assemblies.

As per the Constitution, as soon as the assembly completes its term, election would be held 60 days after its dissolution. However, an early dissolution – even by a single day – allows elections within 90 days.

Also read: Govt may go for early dissolution of NA

Last week, Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar had categorically stated that there will be no extension in the term of the National Assembly; rather the national and two provincial legislatures may be dissolved a few days before the end of their term to give an additional 30 days to political parties to run their election campaigns.

“There will be no extension in the NA’s term. The assembly is completing its term. We have even kept the option of early dissolution of the assembly open,” Tarar said while talking to some journalists after a meeting of the Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reforms last Tuesday.

Tarar, who belongs to the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), however, clarified that a decision with regard to early dissolution of assemblies had not yet been taken.

Also read: Last-minute snags delay electoral reforms proposals

“As far as early dissolution of the assembly is concerned; no one has ilm-e-ghaib [knowledge of the unknown]. It depends on the given situation,” he added.

Minister for Commerce Naveed Qamar—of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP)—who was also walking out of the conference room after attending the meeting revealed that it was the PPP’s proposal to dissolve the remaining legislatures on Aug 8, four days before the completion of their five-year term.

“The PPP has proposed dissolving the National Assembly and two provincial assemblies – Sindh and Balochistan – on Aug 8; a proposal which has already been under consideration by the ruling coalition as it will give them three months for election campaign,” he said.


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