ISLAMABAD, April 27, 2015: The Balochistan Assembly was unable to take up a bill and questions appearing on its agenda as the relevant ministers failed to show up for the sitting on Monday, says Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN).
The sitting started 37 minutes behind the schedule with 18 lawmakers (28%) present at the start and 30 (46%) at the time of adjournment. The Chief Minister attended the entire sitting, while the Opposition Leader was absent.
The House passed the Balochistan Urban Immovable Property Tax (Amendment) Bill 2015 which was introduced by the Minister for Excise and Taxation. However, the Balochistan Protection against Harassment of Women at the Workplace Bill 2015 and four questions addressed to the agriculture and irrigation ministries were not taken up due to the ministers’ absence.
Following are some key observations of the proceedings:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings
- The Balochistan Assembly met for an hour and 19 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1637 hours against the scheduled time of 1600 hours.
- 18 lawmakers (28%) were present at the start and 30 (46%) at the end of the sitting.
- A maximum of 35 (54%) members attended the proceedings.
- The sitting was entirely chaired by a member of the Panel of Chairpersons.
- The Chief Minister attended the entire sitting.
- The Opposition Leader was absent.
- The parliamentary leaders of PML-N, PML and ANP were present.
- Two minority members attended the sitting.
- Three members applied for leave.
- The House passed the Balochistan Urban Immovable Property Tax (Amendment) Bill 2015 which was introduced by the Minister for Excise and Taxation.
- The House did not consider the Balochistan Protection against Harassment of Women at the Workplace Bill 2015 due to the relevant minister’s absence.
Representation and Responsiveness
- None of the four starred questions appearing on the agenda were taken up.
Order and Institutionalization
- Nine points of order consumed 35 minutes (44%) of the sitting.
- No protests/walkouts/boycotts 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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