ISLAMABAD, August 6, 2015: The Senate held special discussion on Thursday to commemorate its 42nd founding day, says Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its daily factsheet.
The Senate of Pakistan was constituted after the promulgation of the 1973 Constitution which was bicameral in nature. Khan Habibullah Khan was appointed as the first Chairman of the Senate and convened the first session of the Upper House on August 6, 1973.
Chairman Senate delivered a speech with regards to the founding day of the Upper House and spoke for 17 minutes, while eleven other lawmakers – two from PML-N and one each from PkMAP, NP, PPPP, ANP, PML, BNP-M, MQM, JUI-F and PTI – also expressed their views on the same.
The sitting witnessed a minute’s delay from the scheduled time of 1500 hours with eighteen (17%) lawmakers present at the outset and 48 (46%) at the time of adjournment.
The House discussed proposed privatization of profit-earning electricity distribution companies. The said matter was raised through public petition. Fifteen lawmakers – five from PPPP, three from MQM, two from PML-N and one each from PML, PkMAP, PTI, JUI-F and ANP – discussed the issue for 64 minutes while the State Minister for Interior concluded the debate during his seven minutes speech.
The House did not take up a Calling Attention Notice (CAN) regarding collection of TV fee through electricity bills even from mosques. In addition, the report of the Standing Committee on Water and Power was also not discussed.
The Chair admitted an Adjournment Motion (AM) for debate regarding gas disconnection to Pakistan Steel Mills while six other AMs were deferred.
Some key observations are as follow:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings
- The Senate met for three hours and 55 minutes
- The sitting started at 1501 hours against the scheduled time of 1500 hours
- The Chairman presided over the entire sitting while the Deputy Chairman was also present.
- The Leader of the House attended the sitting for three hours and 39 minutes.
- The Opposition Leader was not present.
- Prime Minister did not attend the sitting.
- Eighteen (17%) senators were present at the start and 48 (46%) at the time of adjournment.
- A maximum of 52 senators (50%) were present at one point of the sitting.
- The parliamentary leaders of PPPP, PkMAP, MQM, BNP-M, ANP, PML and NP were present.
- Three minority members were present.
- Three members applied for leave.
Representation and Responsiveness
- Seventeen out of 24 starred questions appearing on the agenda were taken up. Additionally, lawmakers raised 37 supplementary questions.
- The Chair admitted an Adjournment Motion for discussion regarding gas disconnection to Pakistan Steel Mills while six other AMs were deferred.
Order and Institutionalization
- No Point of Order was raised during the sittings.
- ‘Orders of the Day’ was available to the legislators, observers and public.
- Information on members’ attendance was not available to the observers and public.
To download the factsheet, click here
This daily factsheet is based on direct observation of the Senate proceedings conducted by PATTAN Development Organization – a member organization of FAFEN. Errors and omissions are excepted.
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