ISLAMABAD, November 24, 2011: The National Assembly met for three hours and 25 minutes during the ninth sitting of the ongoing 36th session. The sitting witnessed low attendance of Members, with only 38 Parliamentarians present at the start, while 64 were present when the sitting was adjourned. The Quorum was visibly lacking at various stages of the sitting. However, the lack of it was not pointed out by any of the Members.
The PMLN boycotted the ninth sitting over the memogate and the shortage of urea fertilizer in the country. They went out of the House at 2020, and did not return to attend the remaining proceedings.
A total of 12 Points of Order were raised, which consumed 44% of sitting time.
The Prime Minister attended the sitting for 75 minutes, while the Leader of the Opposition was present for 95 minutes. Only the parliamentary leader of the PPPS attended the proceedings.
Members’ participation in House proceedings
- The National Assembly met for three hours and 25 minutes.
- The ninth sitting started at 1725 Hours against the scheduled starting time of 1700 hours. The proceedings started late by 25 minutes.
- A Member of Panel of Chairpersons chaired the sitting for 56 minutes, while the remaining time was presided over by the Deputy Speaker. The Speaker was not present during the sitting.
- The Prime Minister was present for 75 minutes, while the Leader of the Opposition attended the proceedings for 95 minutes.
- The Parliamentary Leader of the PPPS was the only one present, while the leaders of the NPP, MQM, BNPA, MMAP, ANP, PML and PMLF were absent.
- The Chief Whips of ANP, PML, MQM, PMLN and PPPP were present, while those of the MMAP and PMLF were absent.
- A total of 38 (11%) Members were present at the outset of the sitting, while 30 (9%) Members at the end of the sitting.
- A total of nine Members applied for leave to be absent from the sitting.
- Seven out of 10 minority Members were present during the sitting.
Representation and Responsiveness
- The House took up one out of two Calling Attention Notices (CANs) which appeared on the Orders of the Day.
- Moved by five PPPP Members, four females and one female, the CAN was regarding “delay in the preparation of the new electoral list for the next general election”, which was directed to Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs.
- A total of 23 questions were listed to be taken up during the Question Hour. However, only 12 questions were put up and responded by the relevant ministries.
- A total of 19 supplementary questions were raised in the House during the sitting.
- Two Bills appeared on the Orders of the Day, which were not taken up by the House.
- One Standing Committee report – the Biannual Monitoring on the implementation of National Finance Commission (NFC) Award – was presented in the House.
Order and institutionalization
- A total of 12 Points of Order were raised, consuming 90 minutes (44% of sitting time) of the sitting. However, none of the Points of Order attracted the Chair’s formal ruling.
- A PML Member spoke on the Motion under Rule 259 about the shortage of urea for 30 minutes.
- The PMLN boycotted the ninth sitting over the memogate and the shortage of urea fertilizer in the country. They went out of the House at 2020, and did not return to attend the remaining proceedings.
- 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.
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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