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Sanjrani quits Senate, takes oath as MPA

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QUETTA: Sadiq Sanjrani took oath as a member of the Balochistan Assembly on Friday, after failing to muster support of the ruling coalition to continue as the Senate chairman for the remaining period of his term, which was set to expire later this month.

Sanjrani was elected to the provincial assembly from PB-32, Chagai, in the February 8 general elections. However, instead of taking the oath as an MPA, in the inaugural session of the provincial assembly, he continued in his role as the Senate chairman.

On Thursday, he convened and chaired a meeting, where the idea of passing a resolution to amend Rule 9 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Senate was discussed. Sanjrani’s efforts to cling on to the higher post raise many eyebrows across the political spectrum.

After his election as an MPA, he was required to relinquish his Senate position under Article 223(4) of the Constitution. The article says that if a member of either House or of a Provincial Assembly becomes a candidate for a second seat which he may not hold concurrently with his first seat, then his first seat shall become vacant as soon as he is elected to the second seat.

The Rule 9(1) of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Senate reads: “At the first meeting of the Senate, after the members have taken oath and to the exclusion of any other business including privilege and adjournment motions, the Senate shall proceed to elect from amongst its members a Chairman, and so often as the Office of the Chairman becomes vacant the Senate shall elect another member as its Chairman, in accordance with the rules.”

Furthermore, Rule 9(2) of the Senate rules reads, “The first meeting of the Senate for election of the Chairman shall be presided over by the outgoing Chairman or, in his absence, by a person nominated by the President.”

The Balochistan Assembly met with Deputy Speaker Ghazala Gola in the chair. In addition to Sanjrani, Mir Zaffar Zehri and Muhammad Khan Lehri also took the oath as members of the provincial Assembly. The session will meet again on Saturday (today) for the election of the president.