Senate rejects third FATF-related amendment bill

Haideri says it is a test for PML-N, PPP: Smaller opposition parties to resist legislation at joint session

By: News Desk      Published: 01:22 PM, 16 Sep, 2020
Senate rejects third FATF-related amendment bill

JUI-F leader Senator Abdul Ghafoor Haideri on Wednesday expressed the hope that the two main opposition parties – PML-N and PPP – would not act as a facilitator of the government in getting the FATF-related legislation sail through the Parliament joint session.

The statement came as the Senate rejected the third government bill aimed at amending the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) ostensibly aimed at complying with the FATF (Financial Action Task Force) requirements. 

However, many among the opposition’s ranks believe that the new proposed laws have nothing to do with the FATF as the government wants to bring authoritarian laws giving arbitrary powers to the state apparatus.

The bill was rejected with 36 votes casted against it while 34 members favoured the move.

Talking to 24NewsHD, Haideri said the bill was a big test for the two parties. “APC is to be held in coming few days. [We] would have to see what these opposition parties do,” he remarked.

Haideri warned that the nature of the APC could change if the PPP and the PML-N supported the government on the bill.

He said the smaller opposition parties have decided to oppose the bill [at the joint sitting] like they had done in the past.

The JUI-F leader also noted that the government did not inform them about the Parliament joint session.

Ijaz Shah

Interior Minister Ijaz Shah on Wednesday presented details in Senate about the properties of banned outfits sealed by the government. 

Speaking on the floor of the Senate, Ijaz Shah said that seminaries, hospitals and other properties owned by the banned outfits have been sealed in the light of United National Security Council (UNSC) guidelines.

The minister said that 76 schools, four colleges, 15 hospitals, 383 religious seminaries, 188 dispensaries and 17 buildings of the banned organisations have been sealed by the government.

Ijaz Shah said the highest number of sealed properties are in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

On August 21, Pakistan had slapped sanctions on more than 88 individuals allegedly associated with different terrorist groups, including Daish, Al-Qaeda and Taliban.

According to the details, the government had also seized the bank accounts and properties of the individuals in the country. They had also been banned from travelling abroad.

It is pertinent to mention here that the 88 individuals were included in the terrorists’ list issued by the United Nations few days back. In a statement, the Foreign Office had said: “The sanctions are being implemented by Pakistan in compliance with the relevant UNSC resolutions and we hope that other countries will also follow suit.”