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May 18, 2022: National / International Current Affairs
1. Defectors` votes on motion don`t count, SC holds
• The Supreme Court on May 17, 2022 declared by a majority verdict of three to two that votes cast by legislators in violation of their party`s stance must not be taken into account while determining the outcome of a motion since Article 63-A of the Constitution was meant to protect the fundamental rights of a parliamentary party, and not those of defectors.
• `Political parties are an integral aspect of the bedrock on which our democracy rests. Their destabilisation tends to shake the bedrock, which can potentially put democracy itself in peril,` Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial read out the short judgement on the presidential reference about 26 members of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf who voted against their party line in the Punjab Assembly during the chief minister`s election last month.
• The apex court will release a detailed judgement later
2. US offers strong support to rebuild Pakistan`s economy
• Hours after Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari arrived in New York on May 17, 2022 for a series of meetings with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, a State Department spokesperson assured Pakistan of strong US support for their efforts to rebuild the Pakistani economy.
• The United States `will continue to work bilaterally on ways to grow investment and trade opportunities to build a prosperous and stable Pakistan,` the spokesperson told Dawn in Washington.
• The United States also `welcomes the ongoing International Monetary Fund (IMF) deliberations with Pakistan,` the spokesperson added
3. Sinovac ready to invest in Pakistan`s health sector
• Representatives of the Chinese company, Sinovac, have expressed an interest in forming partnerships for the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of diseases through investment in the health sector of Pakistan.
• A delegation from the company, led by its General Manager Qiang Gao, assured Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on May 17, 2022 that they were ready to start projects in Pakistan.
• During the meeting, it was decided that the Ministry of National Health Services (NHS) will form a task force for the projects proposed by Sinovac so that the process of implementation of work could be expedited. The company has already supplied millions of Covid-19 vaccine doses and played a major role towards boosting the immunity level of the masses against the disease
4. Punjab govt removes 19 law officers
• The Punjab government on May 17, 2022 removed 19 provincial law officers appointed by the previous regime of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI).
• A notification issued by the law and parliamentary affairs department says the competent authority is pleased to dispense with the services of four additional advocate generals with immediate effect. They are Anis AliHashmi, Umair Khan Niazi, Nadir Manzoor Duggal and Rai Shahid Saleem Khan.
• The government also terminated the services of 15 assistant advocate generals Fayyaz Ahmad Mehr, Safdar Hayat Bosal, Mian Shakeel Ahmad, Fayyaz Ahmad Basra, Mudassar Elahi Warraich, Manzoor Ahmad Warraich, Arsalan Khan Sihar, Mukhtar Ahmad, Sikandar-i-Azam, Ms Farhat Majeed, Javed Ali Dogar, Ayub Buzdar, Shahid Riaz, Haji Dilber Khan and Malik Altaf Hussain Rawn
5. Two policemen martyred in Lakki attack
• Two policemen were martyred when armed men attacked them near Agari Khanzadkhel area here on May 17, 2022. An official said that the slain cops Zubair and Lutfur Rehman were posted to the Ghaznikhel police station.
• The deceased had been deployed at the matriculation examination centre in government high school, Jabukhel, for security duty, he added. The official said that the incident occurred when the policemen were returning to the police station on a motorcycle after performing duty.
• The attackers escaped the place, and a large contingent of police reached there and launched a search for them, maintained the official, adding no arrests were made immediately. He said the bodies of the martyred policemen were shifted to the District Headquarters Hospital for fulfilling medico-legal formalities.