Resolution withdrawn on ‘technical grounds’ but was always unlikely to succeed as ruling PTI has 94 of 145 seats in provincial assembly
Opposition parties in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assembly on Monday withdrew a notice for a no-confidence motion against Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, citing “technical grounds” for their abrupt reversal.
“We the undersigned hereby withdraw, on behalf of all the signatories, the [notice of motion for leave to move resolution for vote of no-confidence] submitted to the Assembly Secretariat on Friday, April 8, 2022, at 5:45 p.m. on technical grounds,” it said, with the signatures of the Awami National Party’s Sardar Hussain Babak and Khushdil Khan advocate; and Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz)’s Sobia Shahid.
The opposition had, on April 8, submitted a notice for no-confidence against the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa chief minister in an apparent attempt to prevent the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)-led government from dissolving the provincial assembly as it did the National Assembly earlier this week. “We beg to move that leave may be granted under sub-rule (1) of rule 18D of the Provincial Assembly of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Procedure and Conduct of Business Rules to move a resolution of no-confidence against the Chief Minister under Article 136 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan,” read the motion submitted to the assembly secretariat. “Whereas Mr. Mahmood Khan has ceased to command the confidence of the majority of the members of this assembly as the chief minister, it is hereby resolved that Mr. Mahmoood Khan shall stand ceased to hold the said office,” it added.
The notice was submitted by Babak, Khan and Shagufta Malik of the ANP; Nighat Orakzai of the Pakistan Peoples Party, Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal’s Mian Nisar Gul; and Balochistan Awami Party’s Bilawal Afridi. It carried the signatures of 36 lawmakers of the joint opposition, including 17 of the MMA, 12 of the ANP, six of the PPP and one of the Jamaat-e-Islami.
Unlike the National Assembly and the Punjab Assembly, the no-confidence motion against Mahmood Khan was always unlikely to succeed, as the opposition has significantly fewer members in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa than the other assemblies. The PTI is the single largest party in the 145-member house with 94 members, while the total strength of the opposition is just 51.