ISLAMABAD, April 12, 2011: The National Assembly met for two hours and 18 minutes in the 2nd sitting of the ongoing 30th Session. The sitting witnessed low attendance of Members with only 13% of the legislators present at the outset of the sitting and 24% at the end.
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.
A total of 23 Points of Order were raised, which consumed 75% of the sitting time. However, none of the Points of Orders raised by Members attracted Speaker’s formal ruling.
The House did not take up the Bill listed on the Orders of the Day during the course of the sitting.
The Prime Minister attended the sitting for only three minutes, while the Leader of Opposition was not present. The Parliamentary Leaders of the NPP and PPPS were the only ones present, whereas the leaders of other parliamentary parties did not attend the sitting’s proceedings:
Members’ participation in House proceedings
- The National Assembly met for two hours and 18 minutes.
- The second sitting started at 1045 Hours against the scheduled starting time of 1000 hours. The House proceedings started late by 45 minutes.
- The Speaker was not present during the proceedings. The entire sitting time was presided over by the Deputy Speaker.
- The Prime Minister attended the sitting briefly for three minutes, while the Leader of Opposition was not present.
- The Parliamentary Leaders of NPP and PPPS were present, while the leaders of PML, MQM, MMAP, PMLF, ANP and BNPA were absent.
- The Chief Whips of PPPP, PMLN, MMAP, ANP and PMLF were present, while the chief whips of MQM, PML and BNPA were absent.
- A total of 45 (13%) Members were present at the outset of the sitting, while 81 (24%) Members at the end of the sitting. Maximum presence of 147 Members (43%) was observed at one point of the sitting.
- Six Members applied for leave to be absent from the sitting.
- A total of seven Minority Members were present during the sitting.
Representation and Responsiveness
- There were two Calling Attention Notices on the Orders of the Day. The House took up both CANs.
- The first CAN was regarding the “purchase of electric transformers by WAPDA at high rates and their non-availability”. This CAN was directed to the Ministry of Water and Power and was moved by five Members of the PMLN
- The other CAN was regarding the “dilapidated condition of Peshawar-Torkham National Highway” which was directed to the Ministry of Communications.
- There was no Question and Answer session as Tuesday’s sitting was a
Private Members Day.
- The National Assembly did not take up the bill listed on the Orders of the Day.
- One Standing Committee report regarding the Imports and Exports (Control) (Amendment) Bill, 2010 was presented to the House.
Order and Institutionalization
- A total of 23 Points of Order were raised, consuming 104 minutes (75% of total sitting time) of the sitting. However, none of the Points of Order raised by Members attracted Speaker’s ruling.
- The House unanimously adopted a Resolution regarding support to the Japanese people and offered condolences for the deceased victims of the earthquake. This Resolution was not on the Orders of the Day, and was presented as supplementary agenda.
- There was no Adjournment Motion raised during the course of the sitting.
- A total of five Motions Under Rule 259 were listed on the agenda, but None of them was taken up by the House.
- One Matter of Public Importance regarding “the energy crisis in the country” was also listed for the Private Members’ Day agenda, but was not taken up by the House.
- There were no instances of protests, boycotts or walkouts during the sitting.
- Orders of the Day were 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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