KP, Balochistan assemblies elect Saleem Swati, Khaliq Achakzai as speakers

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan assemblies on Thursday elected Babar Saleem Swati and Abdul Khaliq Achakzai as speakers, respectively.

In KP Assembly, Babar Saleem Swati of Sunni Ittehad Council (SUI) secured 89 votes whereas Ihsanullah Khan of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) could only bag 17 votes. A total of 106 votes were polled. 

Later Swati took oath as speaker of the assembly.  

Parliamentary committee of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), in a meeting, had approved Babar Saleem Swati for the slot of speaker while Surayya Bibi, a returned candidate from Chitral in general election, was approved for deputy speaker.

Babar Saleem Swati and Surayya Bibi had submitted papers for speaker and deputy speaker positions from the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) platform.

Earlier, former National Assembly speaker Asad Qaiser's brother Aqibullah was nominated for speaker slot but withdrew the nomination a day before the election.

Papers of Ehsanullah Miankhel of the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) for the speaker and Arbab Wasim Hayat of the PTI-Parliamentarian for the deputy speaker had been submitted by the opposition.

The papers of candidates of Sunni Ittehad Council and opposition parties have been declared complete.

Separately, the Balochistan Assembly elected Pakistan Muslim League -  Nawaz's Abdul Khaliq Achakzai as speaker and Ghazala Gola as deputy speaker unopposed. 

It may be recalled that that 57 newly-elected members of the Balochistan Assembly had taken oath on Wednesday. The full strength of the assembly members is 65.

The PML-N had nominated Captain (R) Abdul Khaliq Achakzai as speaker Balochistan Assembly. PML-N's nominated candidate for prime ministership Shehbaz Sharif gave approval for the name of speaker Balochistan Assembly.

The newly-elected speaker and deputy speaker will take oath during the assembly session at 3:00 pm. 

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