ISLAMABAD, April 26, 2012: The fourth sitting of the National Assembly’s 41st session lasted only 32 minutes on Monday as the House was adjourned amid sloganeering by the opposition over the Supreme Court decision in the contempt case against the Prime Minister.=
The Deputy Speaker was forced to adjourn the sitting, which started an hour and 28 minutes behind schedule, till Wednesday. The proceedings were disrupted when the PMLN Members started sloganeering on the issue of Supreme Court’s decision.
A total of 115 Legislators present at the start and 170 when the sitting was adjourned. A maximum of 186 Members were observed at any time of the sitting.
The Prime Minister and the Leader of Opposition did not attend the sitting.
Following are some key observations of the parliamentary business:
Members’ participation in House proceedings
- The National Assembly met for 32 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1828 hours instead of the scheduled starting time of 1700 hours. The proceedings started an hour and 28 minutes late.
- The Deputy Speaker chaired the sitting. The Speaker was not present
- The Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition did not attend the sitting.
- Only the parliamentary leaders of the NPP and PPPS were present, while those of ANP, BNPA, MQM, MMAP, PMLF and PML remained absent.
- The Chief Whips of PPPP, PMLN, PML, MMAP, ANP and MQM were present.
- A total of 115 Legislators (34%) were present at the outset while there were 170 MNAs (50%) at the end of the sitting. A maximum of 186 Members were present at one point of the sitting.
- Five minority Members were present.
- Five Members applied for leave.
Representation and Responsiveness
- Out of the 19 questions to be taken up during the Question Hour, only one was put up and responded by the relevant ministries.
- One Supplementary question was also raised during the sitting.
- The Chartered Accountants (Amendment) Bill 2012 was introduced and sent to the respective Standing Committee.
- The Drug Regulatory Agency of Pakistan Ordinance 2012 was presented during the sitting.
Order and institutionalization
- No Points of Order were raised during the sitting.
- The proceedings were disrupted when the PMLN legislators started sloganeering on the issue of Supreme Court’s verdict in the contempt case against the Prime Minister. The Deputy Speaker was forced to adjourn 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 Member.
The Daily Factsheet is based on direct observation of National Assembly proceedings conducted by Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI), a Member organization of FAFEN.
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