General

National Assembly passes two bills seeking amendments to electoral laws

Islamabad, June 10, 2021 (PPI-OT):The National Assembly, amid opposition’s protest on Thursday, passed 21 government bills including two legislative proposals seeking amendments to the electoral laws, observes Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) in its Daily Factsheet.

Following are key observations of the proceedings during the third sitting of 34th session:

Members’ Participation

The National Assembly for four hours and 19 minutes; however, the proceedings remained suspended for 23 minutes due to prayer break.

The sitting started at 04:23 pm against the scheduled time of 04:00 pm.

The speaker presided over the sitting for two hours and 11 minutes while the remaining sitting was chaired by the Deputy Speaker.

The leaders of the House (Prime Minister) and the opposition did not attend the sitting.

As many as 61 (18 percent) lawmakers were present at the outset and 51 (15 percent) at the adjournment of the sitting.

The parliamentary leader of PPPP, PML and BAP attended the sitting.

Eight minority lawmakers were present.

Output

The House witnessed introduction of three government bills which were referred to the relevant committees for consideration. These bills were the Pakistan Allied Health Professionals Council Bill, 2021; the Pakistan Nursing Council (Amendment) Bill, 2021 and the Mutual Legal Assistance (Criminal Matters) (Amendment) Bill, 2021.

Nine reports of various standing committees on as many legislative proposals were presented.

The House passed a motion with majority vote seeking leave to suspended the rules for consideration of the Financial Institutions (Secured Transactions) (Amendment) Bill, 2021. One hundred and twelve (112) lawmakers voted in favour of the motion, while 101 lawmakers opposed it. Subsequently, the House passed the same bill after clause by clause reading.

The House passed 20 other government bills with majority vote after voice voting. These bills were the Elections (Amendment) Bill, 2020; the Elections (Second Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Port Qasim Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Pakistan National Shipping Corporation (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Gwadar Port Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Regulation of Generation, Transmission and Distribution of Electric Power (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Anti-Rape (Investigation and Trial) Bill, 2020; the Mutual Legal Assistance (Criminal Matters) (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Federal Medical Teaching Institutes Bill, 2020; the National Institute of Health (Re-organization) Bill, 2020; the Maritime Security Agency (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the International Court of Justice (Review and Re-consideration) Bill, 2020; the Covid-19 (Prevention of Hoarding) Bill, 2020; the SBP Banking Services Corporation (Amendment) Bill, 2020; the Corporate Restructuring Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Pakistan Academy of Letters (Amendment) Bill, 2021; the Muslim Family Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (Section 4); the Muslim Family Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (Section 7) and the Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2021.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs presented the report of 2nd biannual monitoring on the Implementation of 7th NFC Award (January-June, 2020).

Representation and Responsiveness

Minister for Communications responded to a calling attention notice regarding suspension of public transport buses on Motorway by the Motorway Police.

The House did not consider another CAN and a motion of thanks to the President.

.Order and Institutionalization

Eight lawmakers spoke on point of orders for 43 minutes.

Two PML-N lawmakers and a PPPP lawmaker pointed out the quorum on three occasions but it was found complete upon counting. However, the Chair ignored the quorum twice during legislation process pointed out by PPPP and PML-N lawmakers.

The entire opposition walked out from the House at 07:48 pm against hasty legislation and did not return till adjournment of sitting at 08:42 pm. Earlier, the opposition also protested during the proceedings for 50 minutes on the same issue.

The House was adjourned to meet again on Friday, June 11, 2021 at 04:00 pm.

Transparency

Orders of the Day was available to legislators, observers and public.

Attendance of lawmakers was available to media and observers.

For more information, contact:
Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN)
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