NA Speaker Stages Walkout over Absence of Interior Ministry’s Officials

ISLAMABAD, March 13, 2018: The Speaker National Assembly suspended the proceedings and staged a walkout from the House on Tuesday over absence of representatives from Ministry of Interior who had to respond agenda items, observes Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in Daily Factsheet.

Following are key observations of the proceedings during third sitting of the 54th session:

Members’ Participation

  • The National Assembly met for two hours and 59 minutes; however, the proceedings remained suspended for 18 minutes.
  • The sitting started at the scheduled time of 1030 hours.
  • The Speaker presided over the sitting for 32 minutes; the Deputy Speaker for an hour and 37 minutes while rest of the proceedings were chaired by a member of Panel of Chairpersons.
  • The Leader of the House (Prime Minister) did not attend the sitting.
  • The Leader of the Opposition was present for 22 minutes.
  • As many as 21 (6%) lawmakers were present at the outset and 16 (5%) at the adjournment of the sitting.
  • The parliamentary leaders of PPPP, JI, QWP, APML and PkMAP attended the sitting.
  • Five minority lawmakers were also present.


  • The House witnessed presentation of two private members’ bill including the Compulsory Drug Test of Students Bill, 2018 and the National Commission for persons with Disabilities Bill, 2018. Both bills were referred to the relevant committee for further consideration.
  • Three other private members’ bills including the Prevention of Drugs in Educational Institutions Bill, 2018; the National Dress Bill, 2018 and the Tour Operators and Travel Agents (Regulation) Bill, 2018 were not taken up due to absence of their relevant movers.
  • The remaining agenda items including bills, reports of Standing Committees, resolutions, motions under Rule 259 and a Calling Attention Notice were suspended to discuss the political situation in the country through points of order.

Representation and Responsiveness

  • The House took up a Calling Attention Notice (CAN) regarding humiliation of Pashtoons by the law enforcing agencies which was responded to by Minister for Interior.
  • The House did not take up another CAN regarding de-limitation of constituencies in the country and five motions under Rule 259.
  • Tabled by Minister for SAFRON, the House passed a motion to constitute Parliamentary Committee which will raise concerns with Election Commission of Pakistan regarding delimitation of constituencies in the country.

Order and Institutionalization

  • Lawmakers spoke on 16 points of order consuming an hour and 49 minutes of the proceedings.
  • Speaker National Assembly staged a walkout at 1120 hours over absence of officials of Interior Ministry and did not return till adjournment of sitting at 1329 hours. He stated to continue walkouts until Prime Minister gives a written undertaking that such a scenario will not be repeated.
  • PTI lawmakers also walked out of the House following the Speaker’s walkout. However, they returned to the House after five 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