ISLAMABAD, March 27, 2015: The Punjab Assembly witnessed thin attendance of lawmakers on Friday as the House passed a resolution to condemn the attack on Christians in Lahore earlier this month, says Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN).
The sitting started two hours and 14 minutes late with 65 legislators (18%) present at the start and 10 (3%) at the time of adjournment. The Leader of the House, the Opposition Leader and the parliamentary leaders of all political parties were absent.
The Punjab Disabled Persons (Employment and Rehabilitation)(Amendment) Ordinance 2015 and the Punjab Overseas Pakistanis Commission (Amendment) Ordinance 2015 were laid during the sitting. In addition, the Fatima Jinnah Medical University Lahore Bill 2015 was also introduced.
The House initiated the pre-budget discussion which went on for 32 minutes. Four PML-N members including the Provincial Finance Minister shared their views during the discussion. Following are some key observations from the House proceedings:
Members’ Participation in the House Proceedings
- The Punjab Assembly met for two hours and 11 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1614 hours against the scheduled time of 1400 hours.
- 65 members (18%) were present at the start and 10 (3%) at the end of the sitting.
- The Deputy Speaker chaired the entire sitting.
- The Leader of the House and the Opposition Leader were absent.
- None of the parliamentary leaders attended the sitting.
- Three out of eight minority members attended the proceedings.
- The Punjab Disabled Persons (Employment and Rehabilitation)(Amendment) Ordinance 2015 and the Punjab Overseas Pakistanis Commission (Amendment) Ordinance 2015 were laid during the sitting.
- The Fatima Jinnah Medical University Lahore Bill 2015 was also introduced.
- The House passed a resolution to condemn the attack on Christians in Youhanabad, Lahore earlier this month.
Representation and Responsiveness
- Eight out of 24 starred questions were taken up and responded by the relevant government departments. In addition, the MPAs raised 29 supplementary questions.
- Four PML-N members including the Provincial Finance Minister spoke on the pre-budget discussion for 32 minutes.
Order and Institutionalization
- The lawmakers raised eight points of order that consumed seven minutes of the sitting.
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to legislators, observers and others.
Correction: An earlier version of this factsheet mistakenly stated that the House witnessed a walkout during the sitting.
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This daily factsheet is based on direct observation of the Punjab Assembly proceedings conducted by PATTAN Development Organization – a member organization of FAFEN. Errors and omissions are excepted.
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