The fifth sitting of Nineteenth Session of the National Assembly that started at 1033 Hours with only 42 members present lasted for a little over two hours, reported the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) reported
The following are some key observations of the Parliamentary Business:
Members’ participation in House proceedings
- The National Assembly met for 02 hours and 11 minutes.
- The fifth sitting started at 1033 Hours against the scheduled starting time of 1000 hours. The House proceedings started late by 33 minutes.
- The Speaker of the House was not present during the sitting. The Deputy Speaker chaired the sitting.
- The Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition were present during the sitting.
- Parliamentary leaders of PPPP, PML-N and PPP-S were present, while the leaders of PML, MQM, MMAP, ANP, NPP, PML-F and BNPA remained absent.
- 04 Members appealed for leave to be absent from the sitting.
- A total of 42 members were present at the outset of the sitting, while 121 members at the end of the sitting.
Representation and Responsiveness
- There were 2 Calling Attention Notices (CAN) on the Orders of the Day. The House took up one CAN.
- The Calling Attention Notice taken up by the House was directed to the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs.
- The cross-party notice was tabled by four female parliamentarians belonging to PML, ANP, PPPP and MQM and raised the issue of “stopping of women from polling votes in bye-elections”.
- There was no Question and Answer session in the sitting as the prerequisite two weeks have not lapsed between the two sessions.
- There was only one bill [The Federal Public Service Commission
- (Amendment) Bill, 2010], which was deferred by the House to be discussed on February 15, 2010.
Order and institutionalization
- 20 Points of Order were raised. However, none of them required Speaker’s ruling.
- The House debated for 45 minutes the Adjournment Motion on “the construction of Baghlihar Dam, Kishan Ganga Dam and Wooler Barrage by India in violation of the Indus Basin Treaty which is causing blockade and deficiency of water to Pakistan.
- There was no instance of protest, boycott or walkout in Friday’s sitting.
- Orders of the Day was 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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