Punjab Assembly session underway to elect new speaker

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf will move a no-confidence motion against Deputy Speaker Dost Mohammad Mazari today in the Punjab Assembly and the house will vote for a new speaker after Pervez Elahi's elevation to the post of chief minister.

After the Supreme Court struck down Deputy Speaker Mazari’s contentious ruling on Punjab chief minister’s election, the PTI decided to “immediately” bring a no-confidence motion against the deputy speaker.

The party also finalised the name of former provincial minister for forestry, wildlife and fisheries Sibtain Khan for the Punjab Assembly speaker’s post.

The PTI has claimed that it has 186 votes in favour of its nominee Sibtain Khan, whereas the PML-N is hopeful for victory despite having 178 confirmed votes for its candidate Saiful Malook Khokhar.

The PML-N appeared confident and maintained that they would “110 per cent” win the contest.

“Last time we said that Hamza will become chief minister and he did. This time we vow that Saiful Malook will become the speaker”, a PML-N spokesperson said.

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The party’s explanation for their confidence was that the PTI camp had already developed 'cracks' as they were breaking promises with their allies regarding ministerial placements, which has caused reservations among PTI's allies.

According to the PML-N, Zain Qureshi – the son of former foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi – was also nominated as the PTI candidate for PA speaker but was removed from the race in favour of Sibtain Khan.

PML-N members maintained that their sources and news about the opposition gave them "110% certainty" of victory.

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