Former Prime Minister (PM) Yusuf Raza Gilani announced in the Senate today that he has handed over his resignation to his party (PPP) as Leader of the Opposition in the Senate.

Gilani’s statement comes after his absence from the Senate on January 28 when the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Amendment Bill 2021 was passed.

Addressing Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjarai, Gilani said, “When the voting happened [on January 28], you adjourned the session for 30 minutes, which means you facilitated the government, not the Opposition. During the first round, the majority was of the Opposition. When the House assembled again for the vote, there was a tie.”


“In the history of Pakistan Senate, it was the first time the Chairman senate had to give a vote. As a neutral person, you should have not done this. As the custodian of the House, you should have protected the rights of both sides of the House,” said Gilani.

“The role of the Speaker and Chairman Senate has to be totally neutral. They cannot be biased in any way.”

“I am not astonished by the harsh words of my opponents but I am astonished by the silence of my well-wishers. There are few ministers, if they would have said something [of this sort], it would have been an honour for me. But those who don’t have credibility, are turncoats, are saying that I helped the government. I am saying by your vote they won. At least the credit should be given to you [Sanjrani], not to me ke dhandali ho rahi hai [there is rigging]. There should be no rigging.”

“In the end, I will say that I have already submitted my resignation to my party that I don’t want to be the Leader of the Opposition,” said Gilani.

It is pertinent to mention here that it was Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) leader Dr Musadik Malik, who first pointed out the absence of Gilani from the Senate the day the SBP Amendment Bill 2021 was passed amid an outcry from the Opposition on suffering back-to-back defeats in the House, where it otherwise enjoys a dominating numerical strength.

Taking to Twitter Malik said, “Leader of the Opposition Yusuf Raza Gilani is missing. One vote, i.e. of Mr Gilani, is missing and the bill to make Pakistan a slave of the IMF was passed. And those who made him Leader of the Opposition voted for the government.”

Gilani later appeared on Geo News programme, ‘Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Kay Sath’, and said that he had not received the agenda of the Senate till 1am of the night between January 27 to January 28.

Speaking about his absence from the Senate as SBP Amendment Bill 2021 got passed, Gilani said, “It was humanly impossible for me to reach in six hours to Islamabad.”

“If and when can’t make history. There were a lot of honorable members who were missing. I will question the Dilawar Khan group as to why they voted in favour of the government. The Dilawar group was pressurised to vote for the government.”

Speaking on Dilawar Khan group, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Senator Raza Rabbani said, “The parties in the Opposition must carry out a purge of the soft-at-heart members and those senators who sit on the Opposition benches but vote for the treasury.”

“Friday (January 28) was a collective day of shame for the parliament, in particular the Senate, when it passed a document of surrender, a document which financially makes Pakistan a colony of the international donors and imperialists,” said Rabbani.

PPP Senator Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar regretted that there was a group of people who sat on the Opposition benches but never voted for the Opposition on crucial occasions. He said these people came to the Opposition’s fold when they want to get some benefits and then they vote for the government to get benefits from it as well.