Women lawmakers slam colleague’s arrest
By Irfan Ghauri
ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly on Friday witnessed an unprecedented unity among female lawmakers who irrespective of their political affiliations unanimously condemned the alleged arrest of Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarians MNA Samina Ghurki from Lahore.
Female members of the treasury benches joined the opposition and asked the speaker to take note of the arrest of PPP leaders preparing to welcome Asif Ali Zardari, who is scheduled to arrive today (Saturday).
On a point of order, Hafiz Hussain Ahmed of the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal raised the issue of Ghurki’s arrest. He said that according to the rules, police or the magistrate concerned must inform the speaker before taking action against a member of the National Assembly. Dr Sher Afghan Niazi, the minister for parliamentary affairs, also supported Hafiz Hussain. The speaker directed State Interior Minster Dr Shahzad Wasim to submit a report on the alleged arrests to the house. The minister left the house to seek the report but did not return despite the speaker’s repeated queries from the parliamentary affairs minister on the report. The opposition staged a walkout to protest the speaker for not entertaining their adjournment motions. The proceedings were again affected because of a lack of quorum. The speaker had to adjourn the session till Monday evening.