ISLAMABAD, September 3, 2010: The second sitting of the twenty-fourth session met for 5 hours and 45 minutes. A total of five members spoke for only 86 minutes on the Motion under Rule 259 regarding devastation of life and property caused by recent floods, reports the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its Daily Factsheet on the National Assembly Proceedings.
Two resolutions regarding the “strengthening of democracy” and “abolition of feudalism from the country” were also unanimously passed by the House. The following are some key observations of the Parliamentary Business:
Members’ participation in House proceedings
- The National Assembly met for 5 hours and 45 minutes.
- The second sitting started at 1055 Hours against the scheduled starting time of 1000 hours. The House proceedings started late by 55 minutes.
- The Deputy Speaker chaired the sitting for first 85 minutes, while the remaining time was presided over by the Speaker.
- The Prime Minister attended the sitting for 113 minutes, while the Leader of the Opposition was present for 130 minutes.
- Parliamentary leaders of PML, MQM, MMAP and PPPS were present while the leaders of PMLF, ANP, NPP and BNPA were absent.
- The Chief Whips of PPPP, PMLN, PML, MQM, MMAP and PPPS were present, while the chief whips of ANP, PMLF, NPP and BNPA were absent.
- A total of 141 (41%) members were present at the outset of the sitting, while 93 (27%) members at the end of the sitting.
- The House took a 100-minute break for prayers
- 11 members appealed for leave to be absent from the sitting
- All the minority members were present during the 2nd sitting.
Representation and Responsiveness
- There were 2 Calling Attention Notices on the Orders of the Day. They were not taken up by the House
- Question Hour was not held.
- There were three Bills on the Orders of the Day. These legislations were not taken up by the National Assembly.
- The House took up two Resolutions regarding the “strengthening of democracy” and “abolition the feudalism in the country”. Both of these
Resolutions were not on the Orders of the Day. The resolutions were moved by the Minister for Parliamentary Affairs.
Order and institutionalization
- Three Points of Order was raised, taking up 158 minutes of the House proceedings. However, they didn’t require Speaker’s ruling.
- There was one Motion under Rule 259 on the Orders of the Day, regarding the mass devastation of life and property caused by the recent floods in the country. The House debated on the issue for 86 minutes. A total of five members spoke on the Motion for 86 minutes.
- Parliamentary Leader of PML hard-pressed on the issue that the 24th Session was called to discuss the devastations caused by the floods, but no discussions have taken place yet. This resulted into a procession by PML members, who staged a token walkout. The walkout lasted for five minutes.
- Orders of the Day were available to legislators, observers and others.
- Information on Members’ attendance was unavailable to observers and the public.
- The Quorum was visibly lacking at various stages during the sitting. However, lack of quorum was not pointed out by any of the members of the National Assembly.
The Daily Factsheet is based on direct observation of the Senate proceedings conducted by Center for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI), a member organization of FAFEN
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