ISLAMABAD, February 4, 2016: The Punjab Assembly passed two government bills amidst protest of the opposition on Thursday during fifth sitting of its 19th session, says Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN).
Following are some key observations of the House proceeding:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings
- The Punjab Assembly met for two hours and 47 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1108 hours against the scheduled time 1000 hours.
- The Speaker presided over the entire sitting while the Deputy Speaker was also present.
- The Chief Minister and the Leader of the Opposition did not attend the sitting.
- 26 MPAs (7%) were present at outset and 136 (36%) at adjournment of the sitting.
- The parliamentary leaders of JI and PPPP were present.
- Six minority members were present.
- The House passed the Local Government (First Amendment) Bill 2016 and the Punjab Local Government (Second Amendment) Bill 2016. The House adopted a motion under Rule 234 to suspend the Rule 95(3). The Rule 95(3) required three days to intervene between the supply of copies of a bill to the lawmakers and consideration of that bill.
Representation and Responsiveness
- The government orally responded to 10 out of 14 starred questions appearing on agenda. The House ran out of time for Question Hour while one question was pending whereas three questions were disposed of due to absence of movers. The lawmakers also asked 23 supplementary questions.
- The treasury also responded to two adjournment motions sponsored by a lawmaker belonging to PML-N.
- On request of the relevant minister, the House deferred three Calling Attention Notices.
Order and Institutionalization
- The lawmakers spoke on ten points of order consuming 15 minutes of the proceeding.
- The House referred a privilege motion to the relevant committee.
- The opposition parties staged a token boycott for four minutes against the government for not assuring the House to legislate for ban on sale of liquor in the province.
- Entire Opposition staged walkout against hasty passage of bills without allowing the lawmakers to read the bills and propose amendments.
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and public.
- The attendance of lawmakers was available to the media and observers.
The daily factsheet is based on direct observation of the Punjab Assembly proceedings conducted by PATTAN Development Organization – a member organization of FAFEN. Errors and omissions are regretted.
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