ISLAMABAD, December 3, 2014: The National Assembly unanimously adopted a resolution in its 6th sitting of 16th session urging the government to take care of special needs of persons with disabilities and ensure implementation of their employment quota in the country, says the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN).
The resolution was tabled by a PPPP female lawmaker in connection with the International Day of People with Disabilities. Seven lawmakers – PPPP and MQM (2 each) and one each of PML-N, JI and PkMAP – debated the resolution.
The House also discussed the President’s address to the Joint Session of the Parliament on June 2, 2014, and five lawmakers – one each from MQM, PML-N, PPPP, JI and PkMAP – participated in the debate for 70 minutes.
Low attendance of members persisted as 59 legislators (17%) were present at the start and 37 (11%) at the adjournment of the sitting.
The House took up two calling attention notices (CANs) o the first regarding migration of 300,000 people from Balochistan and lack of response by the government to the situation and the second about inadequate arrangements for diagnosis of tuberculosis in TB Hospital, Rawalpindi resulting in spread of the disease.
Following are some key observations of the parliamentary business:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings:
- The National Assembly met for three hours and 11 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1630 hours against the scheduled time of 1600 hours, witnessing a delay of 30 minutes.
- A prayer break of 22 minutes was observed during the sitting.
- The Speaker presided over the entire sitting and the Deputy Speaker was absent.
- The Prime Minister did not attend the sitting while the Leader of the Opposition was present for 38 minutes.
- The parliamentary leaders of PML-F, PkMAP, ANP, QWP, APML, PML-Z and JI were present.
- Fifty-nine members (17% of the total membership) were present at the outset while 37 (11%) at the time of adjournment. A maximum of 152 members were observed to be present at one point of the sitting.
- Ten minority members attended the sitting.
- Eleven members applied for leave.
- Tabled by a PPPP female lawmaker, the House unanimously adopted a resolution urging the government to take care of special needs of persons with disabilities and ensure implementation of their employment quota.
Representation and Responsiveness
- Sponsored by five PPPP lawmakers including three female, the House took up a CAN regarding migration of 300,000 people from Balochistan and lack of response by the government to the situation.
- The House also took up another CAN sponsored by two PML-N female lawmakers about inadequate arrangement for diagnosis of tuberculosis in TB Hospital, Rawalpindi resulting in spread of the disease.
- The House took up six out of 32 questions (requiring oral as well as written replies) while the members also asked 10 supplementary questions.
Order and Institutionalization
- The lawmakers spoke on six points of order for six minutes.
- No protests/walkouts/boycotts were witnessed during the entire sitting.
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and others.
- Information on members’ attendance was not available to observers and the public.
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This publication has been produced with the assistance of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of FAFEN and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union. This daily factsheet is based on direct observation of the National Assembly proceedings conducted by Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI) – a member organization of FAFEN. Errors and omissions are excepted.
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