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Opposition walks out as FATA Reforms impasse persists in NA

ISLAMABAD: The opposition once again staged a walkout from the National Assembly proceedings on Thursday, as the FATA Reforms Bill for the region’s merger with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa remained out of the agenda for yet another session.

Speaker NA Ayaz Sadiq adjourned the session on indication of the quorum, after leaders from the Pakistan Peoples Party and other opposition parties walked out of the session.

Speaking at the House, Minister for States and Frontier Regions Abdul Qadir Baloch said the government remains committed to implement the FATA reforms.

“The FATA reforms will be implemented in accordance with the wishes of the region’s citizens,” he vowed. He added that the PML-N initiated the move and would take credit by settling the issue.

The Minister said the opposition (PPP) had been in the government three times but did nothing to settle the FATA issue.

PPP’s Syed Naveed Qamar strongly objected the removal of FATA Reforms bill from the Agenda of the national assembly and wondered that while the government makes promises to bring the bill the next day, it changes the agenda of the lower house during the night.

He asked the ruling party to learn lesson from its follies as  it has been isolated. The issue of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas’ (FATA) merger with KP is one of the pending matters for the incumbent government and has dominated the political discourse of the country in recent weeks.

On Wednesday, the FATA supreme council held a meeting with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and said that the citizens of the region want to maintain their separate identity.  INP

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