ISLAMABAD, July 31, 2015: Starting 22 minutes behind the schedule, the National Assembly continued to witness low attendance as only 32 legislators (9%) were present at the start and 50 (15%) at the adjournment of the fifth sitting of the ongoing 24th session on Friday, says Free and Fair Election Network in its daily factsheet.
The quorum was visibly lacking at various stages of the sitting, however it was not pointed out by any of the lawmakers in the House. The Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition did not attend the sitting. In addition, only JI’s parliamentary leader was present.
The House took up two calling attention notices (CANs) and 14 out of 36 starred questions appearing on the agenda. Additionally, 23 supplementary questions were also raised in the sitting.
Some key observations are as follow:
Members’ Participation in the House Proceedings:
- The National Assembly met for an hour and 53 minutes.
- The sitting began at 1052 hours against the scheduled time of 1030 hours, witnessing a delay of 22 minutes.
- The Speaker chaired the sitting for an hour and 33 minutes while the rest of the proceedings were presided over by the Deputy Speaker.
- The Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition did not attend the sitting.
- Thirty-two lawmakers (9%) were present at the start of the sitting and 50 (15%) at the adjournment. A maximum of 87 members (25%) were observed to be present at one point of the sitting.
- Only JI’s parliamentary leader attended the sitting.
- Four minority members were present in the sitting.
- Thirteen members applied for leave.
- Parliamentary Secretary for Finance, Revenue, Economic Affairs, Statistics and Privatization presented second and third Quarterly Reports for the year 2014-15 of the Central Board of State Bank of Pakistan on the state of Pakistan’s economy and the report on Second Biannual Monitoring on the implementation of 7th National Finance Commission Award (January-June, 2014).
Representation and Responsiveness
- The House took up two CANs regarding non-issuance of allotment letters to the employees of constitutional bodies in Bhara Kahu Islamabad Housing Scheme and closure of Benazir Income Support Programme’s office in Upper Dir.
- Fourteen out of 36 starred questions appearing on the agenda were taken up. Additionally, lawmakers raised 23 supplementary questions.
Order and Institutionalization
- Fourteen points of order consumed 23 minutes (20%) of the proceedings’ time.
- No protests/walkouts/boycotts were witnessed.
- The quorum was visibly lacking at various stages of the sitting. However, it was not pointed out by any of the lawmakers in the House.
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and others.
- Information on members’ attendance was not shared with the observers or the public.
To download the factsheet, click here
This daily factsheet is based on direct observation of the National Assembly proceedings conducted by Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI) – a member organization of FAFEN. Errors and omissions are excepted.
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