The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has suspended the membership of 154 parliamentarians, including senators, for failing to submit asset statements in time. Among those whose membership is suspended are Science and Technology Minister Fawad Chaudhry, Maritime Affairs Minister Ali Haider Zaidi and Amir Liaquat.
Others who lost their membership include Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s (MQM) Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui and Pakistan People’s Party’s (PPP) Fahmida Mirza who is Inter-Provincial Coordination (IPC) Minister. Senators Musaddiq Malik, Kamran Michael and Shamim Afridi have also had their memberships suspended.
According to the ECP, those whose memberships have been suspended include 48 members of the National Assembly, 26 members of provincial assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and six of Balochistan.
The ECP has informed the speakers of the assemblies about the suspension of memberships, adding that their membership will remain suspended until they submit their asset statements. The ECP said the suspended members cannot participate in the assembly proceedings.
It said that Section 137 (1) of the Elections Act, 2017, provides that every member of assemblies and Senate have to submit, on or before December 31 each year, a copy of statement of assets and liabilities, including their spouses and dependent children as on June 30on Form B.
The law provides 15 day grace period on the 16th day of January, membership of those who fails to submit the statement of assets and liabilities will be suspended. They cannot function till they file statement of assets and liabilities.