ISLAMABAD, December 16, 2011: The National Assembly met for two hours and five minutes during the second sitting of the ongoing 37th session. The sitting witnessed low attendance of Members, with only 39 Parliamentarians present at the start, while 92 were present when it was adjourned. The Quorum was visibly lacking at various stages of the sitting. However, it was not pointed out by any of the Members.
A total of 14 Points of Order were raised, which consumed 39% of the sitting time.
The Prime Minister attended the sitting for 24 minutes, while the Leader of the Opposition was absent. The parliamentary leaders of PML, MMAP and NPP attended the proceedings.
Members’ participation in House proceedings
- The National Assembly met for two hours and five minutes.
- The second sitting started at 1043 Hours against the scheduled starting time of 1000 hours. The proceedings started late by 43 minutes.
- The Deputy Speaker chaired the sitting for 42 minutes, while the remaining time was presided over by the Speaker.
- The Prime Minister was present for 24 minutes, while the Leader of the Opposition did not attend the proceedings.
- The Parliamentary Leaders of PML, MMAP and NPP were present, while the leaders of the MQM, BNPA, PPPS, ANP and PMLF were absent.
- The Chief Whips of ANP, PMLN and PPPP were present, while those of the PML, MQM, MMAP and PMLF were absent.
- A total of 39 (12%) Members were present at the outset and 92 (27%) at the end of the sitting.
- Five Members applied for leave to be absent from the sitting.
- Nine 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, three females and two males, the CAN was regarding “increase in domestic violence against women throughout the country”, which seek attention of the Advisor to the Prime Minister on Human Rights.
- A total of 20 questions were listed for the Question Hour. However, only nine questions were put up and responded by the relevant ministries.
- A total of 14 supplementary questions were raised during the sitting.
- Two Bills appeared on the Orders of the Day. The Airports Security (Amendment) Bill, 2011 was introduced and sent to respective Standing Committee.
Order and institutionalization
- A total of 15 Points of Order were raised, consuming 48 minutes (39% of sitting time). However, none of the Points of Order attracted the Chair’s formal ruling.
- There were no instances of protests, walkouts or boycotts 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 visibly lacking at various stages during the sitting. However, lack of quorum was not pointed out by any of the Members.
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