Senate: Opposition Continues Boycott

ISLAMABAD, November 1, 2013: The Upper House left most agenda on the orders of the day unaddressed as the opposition parties continued their boycott of the proceedings in the fifth sitting of the 98th session, on Friday.

The Chairman presided the entire sitting in the presence of the Leader of the House along with the parliamentary leaders of JUI-F and MQM.

Twenty-one senators were present at the start of the proceedings when an ANP senator pointed out the missing quorum and left the plenary. The Chair asked for the assembly bells to be rung for five minutes and later the proceedings resumed despite the quorum was found short of a member on a recount.

Only one starred question addressed to the Ministry of Finance received an oral response. Additionally, three supplementary questions were asked.

Following are some key observations of the House proceedings:

Members’ Participation in House Proceedings

  • The Senate met for 39 minutes.
  • The sitting started at 1152 hours witnessing a delay of one hour and 22 minutes against the schedule start time of 1030 hours.
  • Twenty-one Senators were present at the start and a maximum 25 Senators at the adjournment of the sitting.
  • The parliamentary leaders of JUIF and MQM attended the sitting.
  • The Chairman presided over the entire sitting.
  •  The Leader of the House was present while the Leader of the Opposition was absent.

Representation and Responsiveness

  • One out of 23 starred questions on the agenda about the Ministry of Finance was taken up and answered on the floor. Additionally three supplementary questions were asked. 
  • The motion under rule 60 to hold a discussion on suo moto actions taken by each High Court of the country since 2009 was not taken up.
  • The only calling attention notice on the agenda regarding regulation of media coverage of terrorism/terrorists/ terrorist attacks episodes and activities in the country was not taken up.  

Order and Institutionalization

  • After an ANP Senator pointed out the quorum and left the proceedings, the Chair ordered for the assembly bells to be rung for five minutes. Later on a recount the quorum was found short of one Senator however the proceedings resumed. 
  • Single point of order was raised during the sitting to point out the missing quorum.
  • The entire opposition boycotted the session due to the alleged misconduct of the Federal Interior Minister in the previous sitting. The MQM lawmakers did not join the opposition’s boycott.


  • Orders of the Day was available to the legislators, observers and others.
  • Information on Senators’ attendance was not available to the observers and the public.  


Disclaimer: This publication has been produced with the assistance of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of FAFEN and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union. 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 excepted