ISLAMABAD, May 7, 2012: Starting 38 minutes behind scheduled time the fifth sitting of the Upper House, which met for three hours and 37 minutes, witnessed two walkouts on Monday.
PMLN Senators again protested over the issue of the Prime Minister’s conviction in the contempt case and boycotted the proceedings. JUIF Senators staged a token walkout for five minutes against the talks for reopening the NATO supply.
The sitting witnessed low attendance. Only nine Senators were present at the start and 24 were there when the sitting was adjourned.
Following are some key observations of the parliamentary business:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings
- Senate met for three hours and 37 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1738 hours against the scheduled starting time of 1700 hours. The proceedings started late by 38 minutes.
- The Chairman chaired the sitting for an hour and 56 minutes while the remaining time was presided over by the Deputy Chairman.
- The Leader of the House was present during the entire sitting while the Leader of the Opposition did not attend the sitting.
- The Parliamentary Leaders of the MQM, ANP and JUIF attended the sitting.
- Nine Senators (9% of total Membership) were present at the start, while 24 (23%) were present when the sitting was adjourned.
- Two Minority Members were present during the sitting.
- Two Senators were applied for leave to be absent.
- The House took a 41-minute break for prayers.
Representation and Responsiveness
- Six Senators debated “the health policy of the Government with particular reference to registration and pricing of drugs, National Health Programmes and formation of drug regulatory authority in the light of 18th Amendment in the Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan” for 37 minutes.
- Eleven Senators debated the Motion under Rule 218 about the situation arising due to power outages in the country for an hour and 23 minutes.
- The Medical and Dental Council (Amendment) Bill 2012 was deferred.
Order and Institutionalization
- No Points of Order was raised during the sitting time.
- The sitting witnessed a walkout by PMLN legislators demanding resignation of Prime Minister after his conviction by the apex court in the contempt case.
- The JUIF Senators staged a token walkout against the talks for reopening the NATO supply. The walkout lasted 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 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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