ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has de-notified a further 43 lawmakers of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) party, following the acceptance of their resignations by National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf.
According to a notification, the resignations of the opposition MPs have been approved with immediate effect.
The de-notified members include a mix of representatives from various provinces, as well as reserve seats for women and minorities.
The development comes barely a day after Ashraf approved the resignation of an additional 43 lawmakers, just as the party attempted unsuccessfully to withdraw the letters of its remaining MPs whose resignations by then had yet to be accepted.
Officials from the speaker’s office requesting anonymity said Ashraf had already approved the resignations by the time the party approached his office, and sent a summary recommending their de-notification to the tribunal.
The latest development has bought the total number of opposition MPs whose resignations have been accepted to 112.
Through its attempted return, the party had aimed to appoint one of its members as the leader of the opposition in the National Assembly, and Asad Umar, secretary general of the opposition party, said Monday they had also informed Speaker Ashraf of the decision via email.
However, the development means that only dissident lawmakers of the party, headed by “turncoat” opposition leader Raja Riaz Ahmed, remain in the National Assembly at present.