ISLAMABAD, July 29, 2015: The National Assembly passed the Islamabad Capital Territory Local Government Bill, 2015 during the third sitting of its ongoing 24th session on Wednesday, says the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its Daily Factsheet.
The State Minister for Interior introduced the bill as passed by the Senate with amendments and the House passed it with majority vote within ten minutes after being read clause by clause. Earlier, fifteen MNAs – six from PTI, four from MQM, two from PML-N, one independent lawmaker and one each from PPPP and PkMAP – participated in debate on the bill and spoke for 36 minutes while Federal Minister for Interior concluded the debate during his 15-minute speech.
The sitting was marked by low attendance of lawmakers with 22 legislators (6%) present at the start and 38 (11%) at the time of adjournment. The quorum was visibly lacking at various stages of the sitting, however, it was not pointed out by any of the members.
The House took up a calling attention notice (CAN) regarding increase in the prices of fertilizers and pesticides, decreased prices of agricultural products and the delay in payments. Another CAN about dilapidated condition of Chakdarra to Mingora road was not taken up by the House.
Two reports of Standing Committee on Parliamentary Affairs regarding the Delimitation of Constituencies (Amendment) Bill, 2015 and the Electoral Rolls (Amendment) Bill, 2015 were not presented.
Two bills – the Pakistan Halal Authority Bill 2015 and the Financial Institutions (Recovery of Finances) (Amendment) Bill 2015 – were not introduced while the Income Tax (Amendment) Ordinance 2015 was also not presented before the House.
Five resolutions seeking extension in period of five ordinances including the Safeguard Measures (Amendment) Ordinance 2015, the Countervailing Duties Ordinance 2015, the National Tariff Commission Ordinance 2015, the Anti-Dumping Duties Ordinance 2015 and the Publication of Laws of Pakistan (Regulation) Ordinance 2015 were not tabled in the House.
The House did not discuss a motion of thanks to express gratitude to the President of Pakistan for his address to the joint session on June 4, 2015 whereas the authenticated copy of President’s address was not presented. The House did not take up a commenced motion under rule 259 regarding deaths in Sindh and other areas due to heat wave.
Some key observations are as follows:
Members’ Participation in the House Proceedings
- The National Assembly met for two hours and 45 minutes
- The sitting started at 1050 hours against the scheduled time of 1030 hours
- The Deputy Speaker chaired the entire sitting
- The Prime Minister did not attend the sitting
- The Opposition Leader was present for 12 minutes
- 22 members (6%) were present at the start and 38 (11%) at the end of the sitting. As many as 103 lawmakers (30%) were present at one point of the sitting
- Only the PTI ‘s parliamentary leader attended the sitting
- Six out of 10 minority members attended the sitting
- Twelve members applied for leave
- Introduced by the State Minister for Interior, the House passed the Islamabad Capital Territory Local Government Bill 2015
Representation and Responsiveness
- The House took up a calling attention notice (CAN) regarding increase in the prices of fertilizers and pesticides, decreased prices of agricultural products and the delay in payments.
- Nine out of 37 starred questions appearing on the agenda were taken up. Additionally, lawmakers raised 20 supplementary questions
Order and Institutionalization
- Two points of order consumed three minutes of the sitting
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and others
- Information on members’ attendance was not available to the observers and the public
To download the facsheet, click here
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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