ECP reserves verdict in disqualification reference against Ayesha Gulalai

  • ECP did not announce the date for announcing the verdict

ISLAMABAD – The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) reserved its decision in the disqualification reference against former Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) member and lawmaker Ayesha Gulalai, here on Tuesday.

The five-member bench under the Chief Election Commissioner Sardar Muhammad Raza Khan heard the case, filed by the PTI after she accused the chairman Imran Khan of sending her inappropriate text messages.

PTI’s counsel Sikander Mohmand reiterated before the election regulator that Gulalai announced leaving the party but then took back the decision.

The lawyer contended that formal statement by Gulalai was sufficient and she did not need to present a written resignation to leave the party.

To this, the ECP inquired regarding the adequate party procedure for leaving.

‘According to the party constitution, no fixed method is present for resigning, the party chief can expel a member’, said PTI’s counsel.

He continued that Gulalai was leaving the party but was not resigning from assembly membership which was not possible as per the party Constitution.

He further said that after the declaration from Imran Khan, Ayesha Gulalai’s assembly membership should be cancelled.

Gulalai’s lawyer barrister Masroor rejected PTI accusations and said that expressing the desire to leave the party and actually resigning were not the same thing.

Taking a jibe at PTI, the lawyer said that the party had also announced to resign from parliament in 2014 but it did not do so.

‘Gulalai has never tendered her resignation to the party and said that she isn’t leaving PTI in National Assembly on August 7’, Masroor said.

It bears mentioning that Imran Khan had sent a notice to Gulalai stating that she has defected from the party in terms of Article 63 A (1) of the Constitution.

The notice, dated August 28, states that Gulalai on August 1 publically resigned from the party, did not vote for the party’s designated candidate in the prime minister’s elections on August 1.