Opposition up in arms over ‘bulldozing’ of SBP bill

Opposition up in arms over ‘bulldozing’ of SBP bill


Staff Report

ISLAMABAD: Shortly after the NA passed the mini-budget, the opposition benches were up in arms against the “bulldozing” of the SBP bill and called for holding a detailed discussion after the speaker suspended the rules for debate.
Taking a dig at the government, PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said that it was very rare to have the premier and the entire front row of the treasury benches in attendance.
He reiterated calls for a detailed debate. “This bill says that Pakistan’s defence expenditure will have just one bank account and all expenditures will be made through that account,” he said, adding that this would make it easier for “international forces” to scrutinise the country’s defence and nuclear expenditure.
Addressing the speaker National Assemly Asad Qaiser, PML-N’s Ahsan Iqbal called on him to not suspend the rules of the House. “If you suspend the rules and bulldoze the bill in the darkness of the night, then your name will go down in history among those who conspired to sell the country’s economic sovereignty.”
He urged the speaker to let lawmakers discuss the bill for two days.
Former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said that the SBP bill was not in the country’s interest. He said that the opposition was ready to debate the bill today and tomorrow.
The opposition began to chant slogans and surrounded the speaker’s dais, who then initiated voting on all the amendments by the opposition which were subsequently rejected.