FAFEN Parliament Monitor National Assembly of Pakistan 27th Session Report

The 27th session of the National Assembly, spanning over 10 sittings, was the longest session during the last four months. Its highlights were the adoption of a resolution on the first anniversary of Army Public School attack in Peshawar, paying rich tribute to the martyrs and reaffirming national resolve against terrorism, besides holding key discussion on the performance of Ministry of Interior and Narcotics Control.

The highest attendance of lawmakers was recorded during the second sitting when 221 legislators were present while the lowest turnout was witnessed during the fifth sitting of the session with only 168 members present in the House.

The Prime Minister did not attend any of the 10 sittings while the Leader of the Opposition attended seven sittings. The Speaker was present throughout the session and presided over the proceeding for nearly two thirds of the total sittings’ duration. The Deputy Speaker chaired the rest of the proceeding except for 55 minutes when a member of Panel of Chairpersons presided over the session.

On average, 200 members attended each sitting. The parliamentary leaders of PTI, MQM and AJIP were among 32 lawmakers, who did not attend any of the sittings. Luckily, 49 members showed up in all ten sittings of the session.

An encouraging aspect was the increased participation of lawmakers in the proceeding. As compared to 126 legislators’ participation during the 26th session, there were 166 members who took part in the proceeding during the reporting session. As many as 110 lawmakers sponsored agenda items whereas 56 lawmakers took part in debates. Nearly three quarters (73%) of the total female membership (70) participated in the proceeding whereas only 43% (116) of the entire male members (268) took part in the proceeding.

Agenda of the 27th session consisted of 91 parliamentary interventions, excluding 350 questions that were entered in separate lists during each sitting. More than one third of these items could not be taken up either due to the absence of movers or early adjournment of the sittings.

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