Pemra bill falls prey to National Assembly's incomplete quorum -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Pemra bill falls prey to National Assembly’s incomplete quorum

ISLAMABAD: Maintaining quorum in the National Assembly seems to becoming an uphill task for the government with every passing day, as Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) bill fell prey to this chronic problem on Friday when the lower house was adjourned well before its scheduled time.

It was the second embarrassing moment for the government in the last three days when Speaker Amir Hussain had to adjourn the lower house despite Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz’s direction to ensure maximum presence of the treasury members.

Soon the clause by clause consideration of Pemra bill started, opposition lawmaker from Islamabad Nayyar Hussain Bukhari pointed out lack of quorum, irking Speaker Amir Hussain who this time came hard on the opposition benches for creating hurdles in the legislative business. He said the opposition legislators were trying to create an impression that the performance of present assembly was not satisfactory vis-à-vis legislative business.

He was of the view that maintaining quorum was the collective responsibility of treasury and opposition benches.

On the other hand, the opposition members, including Zafar Ali Shah were already frustrated because all of their proposed amendments were rejected the other day. Pointing out lack of quorum, Nayyar Hussain Bukhari said the government was not accepting opposition’s proposed amendments and the treasury members were also least interested in important legislation.

His remarks were followed by an unannounced walk out by the opposition members. As was visible, the Speaker did not opt for counting and suspended the proceedings till completion of the quorum. However, the government miserably failed to bring in the required members.

The proceedings resumed after a break of nearly 20 minutes but only for the announcement by the chair regarding adjournment of the lower house till Monday evening. Earlier, Labour and Overseas Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan assured the house for looking into the concerns of OPF Girls College teachers, who had been protesting in front of the Parliament House for the last two days.

Responding to a calling attention notice, State Minister for Interior Zafar Iqbal Warraich said the government would try to make some arrangement to include column of father’s name of women in the national identity card (NIC).
Source: Business Recorder
Date:2/10/2007