ISLAMABAD, May 2, 2012: The Upper House’s second sitting of the 81st session witnessed two walkouts on Wednesday.
PMLN Senators again walked out of the House after attending the proceedings for 15 minutes on the issue of Supreme Court’s verdict in the contempt case against the Prime Minister. They did not come back to the House.
Senators from FATA and those belonging to JUIF staged a walkout against drone attacks. Their walkout lasted 10 minutes.
Beginning 45 minutes late, the second sitting lasted two hours and 35 minutes.
Although the sitting was relatively productive in terms of addressing the listed Agenda, Senators raised 11 Points of Order which consumed 61 minutes of the sitting time. However, none of them attracted the Chair’s formal ruling.
The House unanimously adopted a Resolution to condemn the burning of Quran by an American pastor, Terry Jones.
Following are some key observations of the parliamentary business:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings
- Senate met for two hours and 35 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1745 hours against the scheduled starting time of 1700 hours. The House proceedings started late by 45 minutes.
- The Chairman chaired the sitting for 75 minutes; the Deputy Chairman chaired the sitting for 38 minutes, while the remaining time was presided over by a Member of Panel of Chairpersons.
- The Leader of the House remained present throughout the sitting while the Leader of the Opposition attended the sitting for 15 minutes.
- The Parliamentary Leaders of the MQM, PMLF, JUIF and ANP attended the sitting.
- Twenty-four Senators (23% of total Membership) were present at the start, while 18 (17%) were present when the sitting was adjourned.
- The House took a 19-minute prayer break.
Representation and Responsiveness
- The Calling Attention Notice appearing on the Orders of the Day was not taken up as the prime mover was not present.
- Out of the 15 questions to be taken up during the Question Hour, 12 were put up and responded by the relevant ministries. Additionally, 19 Supplementary questions were also asked.
- The Second Quarterly Report for the year 2011-2012 of the Central Board of Directors of State Bank of Pakistan was presented.
- A Resolution condemning the burning of Quran by an American pastor, Terry Jones, was unanimously adopted by the House.
Order and Institutionalization
- Eleven Points of Order consumed 61 minutes of the sitting time. None of them attracted the Chair’s formal ruling.
- PMLN Senators staged a walkout over the Supreme Court verdict in the contempt case against the Prime Minister. They went out of the House at 1800 hours and did not come back to attend the remaining proceedings.
- FATA and JUIF Senators staged a walkout against the drone attacks. Their walkout lasted 10 minutes.
- Orders of the Day were available to Legislators, observers and others.
- Information on Members’ attendance was unavailable to observers and the public.
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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