ISLAMABAD, January 3, 2011: National Assembly did not take up any regular agenda item during the course of ninth sitting of 27th session as the entire time was consumed by points of orders.
The sitting, lasted one hour 20 minutes, witnessed relatively better attendance of Members than the previous sittings. A total of 117 Members were present at the outset of the sitting, and 161 were present when the sitting was adjourned. A maximum of 213 Members’ (63%) attendance was recorded at one point during the sitting.
National Assembly during the ninth sitting only raised Points of Order and did not take up the two bills and the admitted Adjournment Motion which were listed on the Orders of the Day.
The Sitting witnessed two walkouts by Members of the MMAP and MQM on the increase of the prices of petroleum.
The Prime Minister was not present during the sitting, while the Leader of Opposition was present for 55 minutes. The Parliamentary Leaders of the ANP and PPPS were the only ones present, while the leaders of other parliamentary parties remained absent.
Following are some key observations of the Parliamentary Business:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings
- The National Assembly met for an hour and 20 minutes.
- The ninth sitting started at 1735 Hours against the scheduled starting time of 1700 hours. The House proceedings started late by 35 minutes.
- The Speaker was not present during the sitting. The Deputy Speaker presided over the entire sitting.
- The Prime Minister was not present during the course of the sitting, while the Leader of Opposition attended the sitting for 55 minutes.
- The Parliamentary Leaders of the ANP and PPPS were present, while the leaders of the PML, MQM, MMAP, ANP, PMLF, NPP and BNPA were absent.
- The Chief Whips of PPPP, PMLN, PML, MQM and ANP were present, while the chief whips of MMAP, PMLF, NPP and BNPA were absent.
- A total of 117 (34%) Members were present at the outset of the sitting, while 161 (47%) Members were present at the end of the sitting. Maximum presence of 213 Members (63%) was observed at one point of the sitting.
- A total of seven out of 10 minority Members were present during the 9th sitting.
Representation and Responsiveness
- There were two Calling Attention Notices (CANs) on the Orders of the Day. Both the CANs were not taken up by the House.
- A total of 30 questions were listed to be taken up during the Questions Hour. However, none of these questions were raised and responded to by the relevant minister.
- There was two bill [The Press, Newspapers, News Agencies and Books Registration (Amendment) Bill, 2008] and [The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2010] on the Orders of the Day, which were not taken up by the National Assembly.
Order and Institutionalization
- A total of 17 Points of Order were raised, consuming 75 (94%) minutes of the sitting time. However, none of the Points of Orders raised by Members attracted Speaker’s ruling.
- There was one admitted Adjournment Motion on the Orders of the Day regarding the “increase in the prices of electricity and LPG”, which was not debated upon during the course of the sitting.
- The sitting witnessed two walkouts by Members of the MMAP and MQM on the issue of increase in the prices of petroleum. The walkout by the MMAP lasted 12 minutes, while the walkout by the MQM lasted eight minutes
- Orders of the Day were available to legislators, observers and others.
- Information on Members’ attendance was unavailable to observers and the public.
The Daily Factsheet is based on direct observation of the Senate proceedings conducted by Center for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI), a member organization of FAFEN
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