National Assembly Spokesman clarifies over Senate Chairman’s remarks

Islamabad, May 21, 2016 (PPI-OT):National Assembly Spokesman has given a clarification statement over the remarks made by the Chairman Senate published in newspapers yesterday on 21.5.2016. Senate Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani had expressed his displeasure over eight bills that the Senate had passed and sent to the lower house of parliament, and said that these were pending in the secretariat.

In a statement issued on Saturday, NA Spokesman said that Bills originating in the Senate and transmitted to the Assembly are being processed in the National Assembly Secretariat strictly in accordance with the provisions of the Article 70 of the Constitution read with rules 144, 145 and 146 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the National Assembly, 2007.

He said that Article 70 provides that a Bill with respect to any matter in the Federal Legislative List may originate in either House and shall, if it is passed by the House in which it originated, be transmitted to the other House and if it is rejected or is not passed within ninety days of its laying (and not within 90-days of transmission) in the House, at the request of the House in which it originated, it shall be considered in a joint sitting.

In pursuance of rule 144, the Secretary National Assembly has circulated among all members of Assembly every Bill transmitted by the Senate to the Assembly. The details of each Bill can be verified from the National Assembly Secretariat, he added. Spokesman highlighted that under rule 145, at any time after the Bill has been so circulated, any Minister in the case of a Government Bill or, in any other case, any member may give notice of his intention to move that the Bill be taken into consideration. He clarified that no Bill can be moved in the Assembly or processed in the Secretariat without such notice.

He said that under rule 146, on the day on which the motion for consideration is put down in the Orders of the Day, the Minister or, as the case may be, the member giving notice may move that the Bill be taken into consideration. He reiterated that unless any member or a Minister gives Notice of his intention to move such motion, no further proceedings can be conducted in this regard.

He informed that till date 16-Government Bills, transmitted by the Senate to the present Assembly, were duly processed by the Secretariat, considered/passed by the Assembly and enacted, accordingly. Similarly, 21 Private Members’ Bills were transmitted by the Senate to the Assembly which were as per rules circulated to the members. All the Bills of which Notices for consideration were received, were put down in the Orders of the Day. He further apprised that the Bills which were not passed within 90-days of their laying in the Assembly were returned to the Senate under rule 151.

The spokesman said that out of the Bills referred to the Joint Sitting, 3-Bills were passed whereas 2-Bills are still pending in the Joint Sitting. At the moment in the National Assembly, only 1-Bill is pending before a Standing Committee whereas all remaining Bills are still awaiting notices for consideration to be given by a member of the Assembly.

The spokesman briefed that the Bills referred to in the Print Media on 21st May 2016 require a notice for consideration under rule 145. The office of the Chairman Senate was briefed at 10.00 a.m. on 20th May, 2016 about the details of such Bills passed by the Senate, transmitted to the Assembly and awaiting Notices for consideration under rule 145.

He concluded that it was inconceivable as to why it had been made a point for determination beyond the scope of provisions of the Constitution and rules governing the legislative procedures of both Houses. He said that because identical procedure has been prescribed under rule 118, 119 and 120 of the Senate Rules, with regard to Bills originating in the Assembly and transmitted to the Senate, requiring the Secretary Senate to firstly circulate it among Senators and then put down the motion for consideration on the Orders of the Day only on receipt of a notice therefore from a Senator.

For more information, contact:
Karamat Hussain Niazi
Secretary
National Assembly of Pakistan
Automation Centre,
National Assembly Secretariat,
Parliament House,
Islamabad – Pakistan
Tel: +92-51-9221082-83
Fax: +92-51-9221106
Email: assembly@na.gov.pk
Website: www.na.gov.pk