ISLAMABAD, February 19, 2013: Starting 35 minutes late, the second sitting of 91st session which met for only 25 minutes on Tuesday, witnessed low attendance of Senators. Only five senators were present at the outset while 16 were there at the adjournment, says Free and Fair Election Network in its Daily Factsheet based on direct observation of the Senate.
The ANP and JUIF staged two walkouts of 20 minutes each, separately protesting against the recent bomb blast in Quetta.
The Leader of the House and the Leader of the Opposition attended the entire sitting. The parliamentary leaders of MQM, JUIF, ANP and NP attended the sitting, while those of PMLN, PML, BNPA, and PMLF were not present.
Following are some key observations of the parliamentary business:
Members’ Participation in House Proceedings
- The Senate met for 25 minutes.
- The sitting started at 1105 hours against the scheduled starting time of 1030 hours, witnessing a delay of 35 minutes.
- The Chairman chaired the entire sitting.
- The Leader of the Opposition and the Leader of the House attended the sitting.
- The parliamentary leaders of MQM, JUIF, ANP and NP were present whereas those of PMLN, PML, BNPA, and PMLF did not attend the sitting.
- Only five senators were present at the outset while 16 were there at the time of adjournment. A maximum of 37 senators were present at one point of sitting.
- Two senators on minority seat attended the sitting.
- Five senators applied for leave.
Representation and Responsiveness
- Question Hour was not held as it was a Private Members’ Day.
- An adjournment motion was moved by a senator belonging to MQM over the Quetta blast and Balochistan law and order situation.
- One resolution sponsored by a PPPP member- the only agenda item- was deferred till tomorrow.
- A supplementary resolution, moved by an ANP senator, over the demise of Senator Shahzad Gul was adopted by the house.
Order and Institutionalization
- The senators belonging to JUIF and ANP separately staged two walkouts of 20 minutes each over recent Quetta bomb blast and overall Balochistan situation.
- Orders of the Day were available to legislators, observers and others.
- Information on senators’ attendance was unavailable to observers and the public.
- The Quorum was visibly lacking at various stages of the sitting. However, it was not pointed by any of the legislators.
The Daily Factsheet is based on direct observation of the Senate proceedings conducted by Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI), a member organization of FAFEN
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