Points of Order Consume 46% Time of Low Attendance Second Sitting

ISLAMABAD, March 12, 2010: The second sitting of 20th Session of the National Assembly held here on March 12, 2010 was marked by 15 points of orders, which consumed 46 per cent of the sitting time, reports the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its Daily Factsheet on National Assembly Proceedings.

The following are some key observations of the Parliamentary Business:

Members’ participation in House proceedings

  • The National Assembly met for 02 hours and 3 minutes.
  • The second sitting started at 1043 Hours against the scheduled starting time of 1000 hours. The House proceedings started late by 43 minutes.
  • There was no break during the Second Sitting of the National Assembly.
  • The Deputy Speaker and the Speaker of the House were not present during the sitting. However, the member of PML Mian Riaz Hussain Pirzada Chaired the Sitting.
  • The Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition were present.
  • Parliamentary leaders of PMLF, and PPPS were present, while the leaders of PML, MQM, MMAP, ANP, NPP, and BNPA remained absent.
  • The Chief Whips of PPPP, PMLN, PML, MQM, MMAP and ANP were present, while chief whips of NPP and BNPA were absent.
  • Two members appealed for leave to be absent from the sitting.
  • A total of 68 members were present at the outset of the sitting, while 88 members were present at the end of the sitting.

Representation and Responsiveness

  • There were 2 Calling Attention Notices on the Orders of the Day. The House took up both CANs.
  • The Calling Attention Notices taken up by the House were directed to the Cabinet Secretariat and Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
  • The Notice directed to the Cabinet Secretariat was tabled by 5 members of PMLN, while the notice directed to ministry of foreign affairs was tabled by four independent members.
  • There was no Question Hour in Friday’s proceedings as the prerequisite two weeks have not lapsed between the two sessions.


  • The House took up the Bill [The Pakistan Penal Code (Amendment) Bill, 2009], which was the only Bill on the Orders of the Day.

Order and institutionalization

  • 15 Points of Order were raised, taking up 57 minutes of the House proceedings. However, none of them required Speaker’s ruling.
  • There was One Adjournment Motion on the Orders of the Day on Lahore Bombings. The House debated the issue for 28 minutes.
  • There was no instance of Protest, Boycott or Walkout.


  • An order of the Day was available to legislators, observers and others.
  • Information on Members’ attendance was unavailable to observers and the public.
  • The Quorum was visibly lacking at various stages during the sitting. However, lack of quorum was not pointed out by any of the members of the National Assembly.

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.