ISLAMABAD, June 23, 2010: The Sixteenth sitting of the 23rd Session witnessed relatively high presence of members as the National Assembly initiated the consideration for the demands for grants. As the proceedings came to its conclusion, the demands for grants to 165 institutions of various ministries were unanimously accepted, reports the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its Daily Factsheet on the National Assembly Proceedings.
The following are some key observations of the Parliamentary Business:
Members’ participation in House proceedings
- The National Assembly met for 06 hours and 35 minutes.
- The sixteenth sitting started at 1139 Hours against the scheduled starting time of 1100 hours. The House proceedings started late by 39 minutes.
- The Deputy Speaker chaired the sitting for 135 minutes, while the remaining sitting was chaired by the Speaker.
- The Prime Minister attended the sitting for 131 minutes, while the Leader of Opposition was present for 60 minutes.
- The Minister for Finance and Revenue attended the entire sitting.
- Parliamentary leaders of PML, PPPS and PMLF were present, while those of PMLN, MQM, MMAP, ANP, BNPA and NPP remained absent.
- The Chief Whips of PPPP, PMLN, MQM, ANP, MMAP and PML were present, while the chief whips of PMLF, NPP and BNPA were absent.
- As many as 14 members appealed for leave to be absent from the parliamentary sitting.
- A total of 105 (31%) members were present at the start of the sitting, while 112 (33%) members were present at the end of the sitting. Maximum presence of members in the sitting was recorded at 205 (60%).
- The House took a break of 69 minutes on account of prayers and lunch during the sitting.
- As many as seven minority members were present during the sixteenth sitting.
National Assembly unanimously accepted the demands of grants for 142 institutions/departments of the Ministries of Trade, Communication, Culture, Sports, Defense, Tourism, Foreign Affairs, Education, Health, Food and Agriculture, Youth Affairs, Information and Broadcasting, Labor and Manpower, Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, Local Bodies and Rural Development, Livestock, Religious Affairs, Postal Services, Textile Industry, Narcotics Control, Social Welfare, Forestry, Kashmir Affairs, Gilgit Baltistan, and Zakat and Usher.
- National Assembly rejected, by a majority vote, a total of 200 cut motions introduced by opposition members while accepting demands of grants for 19 institutions/departments of the Cabinet and Establishment Divisions. Similarly 64 cut motions dealing with the grants to four institutions/departments of the Ministry of Industry and Production were rejected by majority.
Order and institutionalization
- One Point of Order was raised, taking up 02 minutes of the House proceedings.
- There was no Adjournment Motion on the Orders of the Day.
- There were two instances of token walkouts by members of PMLN. In the first instance, the PMLN parliamentary party staged a token walkout for 3 minutes against ‘non-introduction of the Accountability Bill in the House by the treasury’. In the second instance, an individual member of PMLN staged a 2-minute walkout against the ‘deteriorating conditions of the industrial sector in the country’.
- Orders of the Day was available to legislators, observers and others.
- Information on Members’ attendance was unavailable to observers and the public.
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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