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South Asian Update
South Asian Update

South Asia

Pakistan’s NA to convene inaugural session on Feb. 29 for lawmakers’ oath-taking

 Published: 15:37, 28 February 2024

Pakistan’s NA to convene inaugural session on Feb. 29 for lawmakers’ oath-taking

Pakistan's National Assembly is set to convene its inaugural session on February 29, marking a significant development after the political uncertainties following the February 8 national polls. 

The primary agenda for the session includes the oath-taking ceremony for the newly elected lawmakers and the determination of the next speaker and deputy speaker of the house.
The general elections earlier this month resulted in a split mandate, with independent candidates supported by former Premier Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party emerging as the largest bloc in the lower house of parliament. 
However, due to a legal battle resulting in the loss of the PTI election emblem these candidates had to run as independents. Consequently, they were unable to form the government or claim reserved seats for women and minority religious communities.
This scenario created an opportunity for other political factions, facilitating the Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N) of three-time former premier Nawaz Sharif to negotiate a power-sharing agreement with Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari's Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) to form a coalition government.
The extended negotiations between the PML-N and PPP led to uncertainty regarding the exact schedule of the first National Assembly session. However, constitutionally required to be convened no later than 21 days after the elections, the session is now confirmed for February 29 at 11 am, according to a senior official at the assembly secretariat who spoke on the condition of anonymity. The constitutional deadline necessitated the prompt organization of the session, addressing the prevailing uncertainty.

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