No end to political turmoil as Usman Buzdar returns as CM

No end to political turmoil as Usman Buzdar returns as CM

LAHORE— Just one month after announcing his resignation ahead of a no-confidence vote that he was certain to lose, Usman Usman Buzdar has returned as Punjab Chief Minister after Governor Omer Sarfraz Cheema rejected the resignation, raising constitutional objection.

The move came just hours before Chief Minister-elect Hamza Shahbaz was supposed to take oath after the Lahore High Court (LHC) Friday nominated National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf to administer the oath.

Rejecting the resignation, the governor reasoned that it contravenes the sub-section 8 of Article 130of the Constitution.

In his letter to Punjab Assembly Speaker Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi, the governor said Usman Buzdar sent his resignation to former Prime Minister Imran Khan, while per the constitution, it should be addressed to the governor.

However, Cheema’s predecessor Chaudhry Sarwar accepted the resignation April 1 despite this error.

Buzdar was facing a no-confidence motion and resigned March 28 after Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) decided to support Elahi for the chief ministership.

After the reinstatement, Buzdar has called a meeting of the provincial cabinet Saturday.

PTI, PML-Q file appeal in LHC

Pakistan Muslim League-Q (PML-Q) and PTI leaders have filed an intra court appeal in the LHC against its Saturday order to nominate Ashraf to administer oath from Shahbaz.

The appeal was filed by Advocate Azhar Siddique on behalf of 17 assembly members.

The federal and the provincial governments have been made respondents in the application

The applicants pleaded the PTI members were encouraged to cross the floor and vote for Shahbaz.

The LHC had no right to interfere in the assembly’s proceedings, the the application added.

They have requested the court to form a larger bench to overturn the decision.

Governor’s meeting with legal experts

According to sources, Governor Cheema held a meeting with his legal team Friday to discuss the options after the LHC’s verdict.

The legal experts briefed the governor and presented him with three options. These options included rejecting the resignation after declaring it unconstitutional or order a new election for the chief minister.

The governor was also briefed on the options to dismiss the assembly.

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