National Assembly: The Service Tribunals (Amendment) Bill Introduced

ISLAMABAD, August 30, 2013: A bill to amend the Service Tribunals Act 1973 was introduced and Electoral Laws (Amendment) Ordinance 2013 laid in the thirteenth sitting of the fourth session of the National Assembly on Friday.

A PML-N legislator introduced The Services Tribunal (Amendment) Bill 2013 and also laid the Electoral Laws (Amendment) Ordinance 2013.

The House also took up a Calling Attention Notice (CAN) addressed to the Minister for Foreign Affairs based on news reports that the New York Police Department labels all mosques as terrorist organizations, a possible US attack on Syria and a threat by the Russian Prime Minister to invade Saudi Arabia in case the US attacks Syria.

Six of 49 starred questions on the Orders of the Day were taken up. Sixteen supplementary questions were also asked.

The Speaker chaired the entire 125-minute-long sitting. The Deputy Speaker was also present. The Prime Minister did not attend the sitting and the Leader of the Opposition was present for 55 minutes. Eight newly-elected legislators also took oath during the sitting.

The parliamentary leaders of PPPP, JI, AMLP, PkMAP and PML-Z attended the sitting.

A scheduled discussion on the President’s address to the parliament was put off.

Following are some key observations of the proceedings:

Members’ Participation in House Proceedings

  • The National Assembly met for two hours and five minutes.
  • The sitting started 10 minutes late at 1040 hours instead of the scheduled start time of 1030 hours.
  • Thirty-five members were present at the sitting’s start and 98 at the end. At one point, there were a maximum of 156 MNAs in the House.
  • The Speaker chaired the entire sitting. The Deputy Speaker was also present.
  • Eight newly-elected MNAs took oath during the sitting.
  • The Prime Minister was absent while the Leader of Opposition attended the sitting for one hour and 55 minutes.
  • Parliamentary leaders of PPPP, JI, AMLP, PkMAP, PML-Z and PTI’s deputy parliamentary leader attended the proceedings.
  • Eleven MNAs applied for leave.
  • Seven minority members were present.

Representation and Responsiveness

  • The House took up a CAN based on news reports that the New York Police Department labels all mosques as terrorist organizations, a possible US attack on Syria and a threat by Russian Prime Minister to invade Saudi Arabia in case the US attacks Syria.
  • Another CAN on power outages and low voltage in Swat addressed to the Minister for Water and Power was not taken up. The CAN also raised the non-upgradation of 66,000 KV grid stations across the country, which results in increased power outages.
  • Six of 49 starred questions on the Orders of the Day were taken up. Additionally, 16 supplementary questions were asked.

Order and Institutionalization

  • MNAs spoke on 13 Points of Order for 35 minutes.

Transparency

  • Orders of the Day were available to the legislators, observers and others.
  • Information on members’ attendance was not available to the observers and the public.  

Disclaimer: 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 excepted.