Published On: Mon, May 28th, 2018
Published in Category: Peshawar

JUI-F workers block access to KP Assembly as it may vote on FATA merger

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Peshawar: The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assembly is expected to vote Sunday on the bill clearing the way for FATA’s merger into the province.

The provincial assembly dissolves on Monday after the completion of its five-year term.

The Senate and the National Assembly have already passed the FATA merger bill. A tw-third majority is now required in favour of the bill at the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assembly to clear the way for the merger.

On the other hand, workers of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam – Fazl, an ally of the ruling PML-N and a strong critic of the merger, is protesting against the passage of the bill. According to JUI-F and Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party, FATA should instead become a separate province.

The party workers tried to barge in to the assembly building and were also restraining lawmakers from attending the session.

A clash took place between the protesters and law enforcement agencies after stones were thrown at the security team. They also staged a sit-in and set pro- FATA merger bill banners ablaze.

After the passage of the bill, FATA will get 16 general seats, four seats for women and one seat for non-Muslims in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assembly. Elections on these seats will be held within a year after the 2018 general elections.

The amendment bill reduces the number of seats in the National Assembly from 342 to 336.

The bill also reduces the number of seats in the Senate from 104 to 96. The existing members of the Senate from FATA will continue to serve until expiry of their respective terms of office.

The constitutional amendment repeals Article 247, which places the tribal areas under the command of the President.

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