ISLAMABAD                  -              Former chairman Senate and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Senator Mian Raza Rabbani Friday said that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government had been violating the constitution for not laying at least three ordinances, promulgated during COVID-19 crisis, before the parliament.

In a statement, the opposition senator said that the federal government continues to violate Article 89 of the constitution as it deliberately failed to lay the three ordinances promulgated during the current pandemic before the parliament. “This act is condemned,” he added.

Article 89 of the constitution requires that an ordinance, if not a money bill, shall be laid before either house of parliament, in the first session, after such promulgation.

Senator Rabbani said the Tax Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020 promulgated on April 17 has altered the tax structures and should have been passed or rejected by parliament in its just concluded sessions. “Because Article 77, Constitution 1973, states, no tax shall be levied for the Federation except by an Act of Parliament. Let alone being passed, it was not even laid before the National Assembly,” he added. The Senate and the National Assembly, the two houses of parliament, concluded their especially summoned session on COVID-19 crisis on Thursday and Friday, respectively.

“Parliament is being made redundant with deliberate intent, as it seems that 1973 Constitution is being reduced to the 1962 Constitution, where the cabinet consisted of the non-elected members and legislation was done through ordinances,” he concluded.