ISLAMABAD, October 1, 2015: The Balochistan Assembly passed Defense Housing Authority Quetta Bill, 2015 amid low attendance of lawmakers during the first sitting of its 21st session on Thursday, says Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN).
The House adopted a resolution to express condolence over tragic Hajj Stampede which claimed hundreds of lives, while another resolution about facilities for pilgrims at Taftan border was withdrawn by the mover after government assurance for provision of said facilities.
The sitting started 22 minutes behind the schedule with 25 lawmakers (38%) present at the start and 28 (43%) at the time of adjournment.
Moved by the Opposition Leader, the Chair admitted an adjournment motion (AM) for discussion in any of the next sittings. This AM was related to abduction of seven persons from Kila Saifullah.
Following are some key observations of the assembly proceedings:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings
- The Balochistan Assembly met for three hours and 24 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1622 hours against the scheduled time of 1600 hours.
- The House had a break for an hour and 31 minutes as the Chair announced to adjourn the sitting at 1717 hours which resumed at 1846 hours.
- Twenty-five lawmakers (38%) were present at the start and 28 (43%) at the end of the sitting.
- A maximum of 32 (49%) members attended the sitting.
- The entire sitting was chaired by Deputy Speaker.
- The Chief Minister attended the entire sitting while the Opposition Leader was present for 55 minutes.
- Parliamentary leaders of PkMAP, PML-N, PML, ANP and JUI-F attended the sitting.
- One minority member attended the sitting.
- Eight members applied for leave.
- Introduced by the Minister for Local Government, Rural Development and Urban Planning, the House passed Defense Housing Authority Quetta Bill, 2015.
- The House adopted a resolution to express sorrow over tragic Hajj Stampede and sympathize with the bereaved families.
Representation and Responsiveness
- Three out of eight questions appearing on the agenda were taken up and responded by the relevant minister while five others were deferred due to absence of the relevant minister.
- Moved by the Opposition Leader, the Chair admitted an adjournment motion (AM) for discussion in any of the next sitting which was about abduction of seven persons from an area of Kila Saifullah.
Order and Institutionalization
- Twelve points of order consumed 29 minutes of the sitting.
- No protests/boycotts/walkouts were witnessed.
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and others.
- Information on legislators’ attendance was not available to the observers and the public.
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This daily factsheet is based on direct observation of the Balochistan Assembly proceedings conducted by Center for Peace and Development (CPD) – a member organization of FAFEN. Errors and omissions are excepted.
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