Khursheed Shah critcises low attendance of lawmakers in NA

ISLAMABAD: The opposition leader in the National Assembly (NA), Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) Khursheed Shah, on Tuesday expressed displeasure over the dismal attendance in the Lower House of Parliament.

The strong resentment from the opposition leader came to the fore as the House conducted members private day on Tuesday and there was no minister present to respond to the private bills moved by the opposition members.

Khursheed Shah said that opposition members are expected to complete the quorum, while the ministers enjoy all the perks and privileges. He said that he had been pleading Nawaz Sharif for four years to attend the National Assembly but he did not hear his advice and ultimately had to go home.

As the House lacked a quorum, the opposition leader said he would not allow the proceedings to continue till the quorum was complete. He asked the speaker to adjourn the House if the government was unable to ensure the quorum.

“Whose job is it to ensure that the quorum is complete?” wondered Shah.

“We want to speak but there’s no one here. We come here for the session. It’s not like we have not got other things to do. We visit our constituencies and attend the session as well,” he commented.

At the moment there are only one and a half ministers present in the House, he added.

In response, Speaker Ayaz Sadiq summoned the information, Capital Administration and Development Division and parliamentary affairs’ ministers. He said that he wanted to run the house on his terms and not the ministers.

Earlier, when the session of the house started, PPP MNA Ejaz Jakhrani pointed out quorum. On counting it turned out that the quorum was not complete.

The session was then adjourned for a while. After the interval, when the house met again, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf MNA Musarraf Zaib pointed out quorum.

When the count was conducted it turned out that the house was not in order and lacked the quorum. Upon this, the house was adjourned till Wednesday.

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