A joint session of the parliament, scheduled tomorrow, has been postponed, Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry said on Wednesday.
The government convened the meeting to pass legislative projects such as the National Accountability Bureau Regulations (Amendment) Bill and the Electoral Reform Bill.
Chaudhry, in a statement on Twitter, said National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser would hold talks with the Opposition over electoral reforms.
“Electoral reforms are the country’s future and we, with the best of intentions, are trying to develop a consensus on this. In this regard, [the speaker] has been tasked to hold talks with the Opposition so that a unanimously agreed upon electoral reform bill can be presented,” he said.
The Minister of Information stated that the meeting has been postponed and hopes that the opposition parties will seriously consider the government’s proposal and work hard to formulate a consensus action plan.
“In case this does not happen, we will still not step back from electoral reforms,” he added.
The information minister made no mention of when the parliamentary session would instead be called.
Right before the announcement, Prime Minister Imran Khan addressed lawmakers of the government and its allies, stressing the need for introducing electoral reforms.
The prime minister told lawmakers that voting in the joint parliamentary meeting should be regarded as a holy war, because it is not for his personal benefit, but for the country.
In response to the postponement, PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz (Maryam Nawaz) just stated that the “rejected” prime minister has asked lawmakers to consider voting in the jihad of the parliamentary session.
“So can the nation ask why was the was the ‘jihad’ abruptly postponed? Although the nation is well-aware of [what is happening], but still, there was a need to ask [this question],” she said.
PML-N spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb asked the condemned Fawad and said that instead of fleeing, he should admit the truth and accept that the government did not get the number of people needed to pass the bill.
The PML-N spokesperson claimed that not only the allies, but the government’s own legislators were not prepared to support the legislation.
Aurangzeb asked why the government remembered to negotiate with the opposition party after convening the joint meeting.