NA Discusses Foreign and Defence Policies, Skips Legislative Business

ISLAMABAD, January 15, 2018: The National Assembly held a discussion on foreign and defence policies of the government while leaving the legislative business unaddressed due to low attendance, observes Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its Daily Factsheet.

Following are key observations of the House proceedings during second sitting of 51st session:

Members’ Participation

  • The National Assembly met for three hours and 53 minutes while the proceedings remained suspended for 33 minutes due to prayer break.
  • The sitting started at 1615 hours against the scheduled time of 1600 hours.
  • The Deputy Speaker presided over the entire sitting.
  • The Leader of the House (Prime Minister) did not attend the sitting.
  • The Leader of the Opposition attended the sitting for two hours and 24 minutes.
  • As many as 41 (12%) lawmakers were present at the outset and 33 (10%) at the adjournment of the sitting.
  • The parliamentary leaders of PkMAP, JI, APML, PML-Z, PPPP and ANP attended the sitting.
  • Six minority members were present.


  • The House did not take up the COMSATS University Islamabad Bill, 2017, the Federal Employees Benevolent Fund and Group Insurance (Amendment) Bill, 2017 and the Marine Insurance Bill, 2017.
  • The Minister of State for Interior presented the Biannual Report of the Activities of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) as required under Section 53 of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act, 2016.
  • The Minister for Parliamentary Affairs presented the reports on Pilot Projects of Biometric Verification Machines (BVMs) and Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) in Bye Elections of constituencies (NA-120 Lahore-III and NA-4 Peshawar-IV) as required under the Elections Act, 2017.

 Representation and Responsiveness

  • The House did not hold discussion on Motion under Rule 259 regarding Kasur Incident and the Motion of Thanks to the President for his address to the Parliament in June 2017.
  • The House took up two Calling Attention Notices (CANs) regarding bursting of tyres due to cat’s eyes/rumble strips and recent increase in the prices of petroleum products.
  • The House took up six out of 39 Starred Questions for answers during the Question Hour. The lawmakers asked 16 supplementary questions as well.
  • The Minister for Defence made 18-minute long policy statement on the issues related to the Foreign Affairs and Defence. As many as eight lawmakers also discussed these issues consuming an hour and 17 minutes of the proceedings.

Order and Institutionalization

  • As many as seven lawmakers raised Points of Order consuming 28 minutes.


  • ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and public.
  • Attendance of lawmakers was available to the media and observers.

This daily factsheet is based on direct observation of the National Assembly proceedings conducted by Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN). Errors and omissions are excepted