ISLAMABAD, January 27, 2012: The seventh sitting of the Punjab Assembly spanning an hour and 40 minutes witnessed low attendance. Only six Members were present at the outset and 29 when the sitting was adjourned.
The lack of Quorum pointed out by a PPPP Member prompted adjournment.
Thirty-four questions were listed for the Question Hour. However, only nine were responded by the relevant ministries. A total of 27 supplementary questions were asked.
Six Points of Order consumed 15 minutes of the sitting time. However, none of the Points of Order attracted the Chair’s formal ruling.
The Chief Minister and the Leader of the Opposition were not present.
Following are some key observations of the parliamentary business:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings
- The Punjab Assembly met for an hour and 40 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1040 hours instead of the scheduled starting time of 0900 hours. The House proceedings started an hour and 40 minutes late.
- The Speaker chaired the sitting for an hour and 30 minutes, while the remaining time was presided over by the Deputy Speaker.
- The Chief Minister and the Leader of the Opposition were not present.
- The parliamentary leaders of the PML and MMAP attended the sitting while those of PMLF and PMLZ were absent.
- Only six Members (2% of the total Membership – 369) were present at the start while 29 (8%) were there when the sitting was adjourned. A maximum of 41 Members (11%) were present at one point of the sitting.
- Four minority Members were present.
Representation and Responsiveness
- Thirty-four questions were listed for the Question Hour. However, only nine were put up and responded to by the relevant ministries.
- A total of 27 supplementary questions were asked.
- The Punjab Local Government (Amendment) Bill 2012 was introduced.
Order and Institutionalization
- Six Points of Order were raised which consumed 15 minutes of the sitting time. However, none of the Points of Order attracted the Chair’s formal ruling.
- There were no instances of protests, boycotts or walkouts.
- Orders of the Day were available to Legislators, observers and others.
- Information on Members’ attendance was unavailable to observers and the public.
- The Quorum, visibly lacking at various stages during the sitting, was pointed out by a female Member of PPPP. The Chair rung the bells for five minutes, but due to persistent lack of Quorum the sitting was adjourned.
|After successfully observing proceedings of the National Assembly, the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) has started the observation of the provincial assemblies – Sindh, Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan – and the Senate.
This daily factsheet is based on FAFEN’s direct observation of the seventh sitting of the 33nd session of the Punjab Assembly.
These reports are released on the day the sittings are held to provide media and other interested stakeholders vital statistics about the Assembly proceedings to encourage informed public discourse on its performance.
The Daily Factsheet is based on direct observation of Punjab Assembly proceedings conducted by PATTAN Development Organization, a member organization of FAFEN
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