ISLAMABAD, October 10, 2011: The National Assembly met for two hours and 58 minutes during the 6th sitting of the ongoing 35th session. The sitting was marked by low attendance, with only 64 Members present at the outset and 70 were present when the sitting was adjourned.
The House continued debate on the energy crisis, power outages, increase in prices of petroleum products, dengue fever, and other related issues. A total of seven Members spoke on these issues for 64 minutes.
A total of 32 Points of Order were raised, which consumed 64 minutes (36%) of the sitting time.
The Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition were not present during the sitting. None of the parties’ Parliamentary Leader except MQM attended the proceedings of the sixth sitting.
The following are some key observations of the Parliamentary Business:
Members’ participation in House proceedings
- The National Assembly met for two hours and 58 minutes.
- The sixth sitting started at 1732 Hours against the scheduled starting time of 1700 hours. The House proceedings started late by 32 minutes.
- The Deputy Speaker presided the initial 15 minutes, while the remaining time was chaired by the Speaker.
- The Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition remain absent during the sitting.
- The Parliamentary Leader of MQM was the only to attend the sitting, while leaders of PPPP, PMLN, PML, ANP, MMAP, BNPA, NPP, PPPS and PMLF were absent.
- The Chief Whips of the PPPP, PMLN, PML, ANP and MMAP were present, while those of the MQM, BNPA, NPP, PMLF and PPPS were absent.
- A total of 64 (19%) Members were present at the outset of the sitting, while 70 (20%) Members at the end of the sitting. Maximum presence of 148 Members (43%) was observed at one point of the sitting.
- The House took a break of 43 minutes for the prayers.
- A total of 18 Members applied for leave to be absent.
- As many as six out of 10 minority members were present during the 6th sitting.
Representation and Responsiveness
- The House continued debates on the energy crisis, load-shedding, price hike in petroleum products, dengue fever and other related issues.
- A Member of PMLN moved a motion to form a Standing Committee on the issue of energy crisis, which was passed by the House.
- A total of seven Members – three PPPP, two PMLN, a Member of MQM and an Independent – spoke on these issues for 54 minutes.
- There were no Bills on the Orders of the Day.
Order and institutionalization
- A total of 32 Points of Order were raised, consuming 64 minutes (36%) of the sitting time. However, none of the Points of Orders raised by Members attracted the Speaker’s ruling.
- 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 lacking at various stages during the sitting. However, lack of quorum was not pointed out by any of the Members of NA.
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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