ISLAMABAD, June 16, 2015: The National Assembly continued to debate the 2015-16 budget on Tuesday as the House witnessed low attendance of lawmakers, says Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN).
Twenty lawmakers (6%) were present at the start of the sitting and 36 (11%) at the time of adjournment. The Prime Minister attended 7% of the proceedings, while the Opposition Leader was present for 38% of the sitting’s duration.
Twenty-one lawmakers spoke during the budget debate that took up nearly 70% of the sitting time. These included nine members from PML-N, followed by PPPP and PTI (four each), MQM (three) and JUI-F (one).
Following are some key observations of the parliamentary business:
Members’ Participation in the House Proceedings
- The National Assembly met for five hours and 50 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1005 hours against the scheduled time of 1000 hours.
- The House held a break for lunch and prayers for 69 minutes.
- The Speaker presided over the sitting for 180 minutes.
- The Deputy Speaker chaired the sitting for four minutes.
- The remaining time was presided over by a member of the Panel of Chairpersons.
- 20 members (6%) were present at the start and 36 (11%) at the time of adjournment.
- A maximum of 166 members (49%) were present during the sitting.
- The Prime Minister and the Finance Minister were present for 25 minutes.
- The Opposition Leader attended the sitting for 134 minutes.
- The parliamentary leaders of MQM, PkMAP, JI, ANP and APML were present.
- All the members on minority seats attended the proceedings.
- Five members applied for leave.
Representation and Responsiveness
- Twenty-one lawmakers participated in the budget debate for 243 minutes. These included nine members from PML-N, followed by PPPP and PTI (four each), MQM (three) and JUI-F (one).
Order and Institutionalization
- The lawmakers raised seven points of order that consumed 20 minutes of the sitting.
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and others.
- Information on members’ attendance was not available to observers and the public.
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The 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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