Faraz says Palwasha chairing session a ‘disrespect’ to House

Deems it inappropriate for any member to preside over sessions in deputy chairman's presence

Our Correspondent June 09, 2024
Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Senator Shibli Faraz said the ECP should take every step to ensure transparency in Senate polls. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB


Opposition Leader in the Senate Shibli Faraz has expressed concern over the recent session chaired by PPP Senator Palwasha Khan in the presence of Senate Deputy Chairman Syedaal Khan Nasar, stating that it "undermines the respect and authority of the office”.

This came a day after the Senate witnessed tense exchanges between the treasury and opposition benches during Friday's session, with PTI members raising objections to Palwasha presiding over the session while the deputy chairman was present.

While Senate Chairman Yousaf Raza Gilani initially led the proceedings, he departed 40 minutes into the session, prompting Senator Palwasha to take over the chair.

PTI Senator Fauzia Arshad expressed regret over the situation, stating that it was inappropriate for Palwasha to chair the session with the deputy chairman present.

In response, Palwasha defended her actions, asserting that it was within the chairman's prerogative to allow her to chair the session, noting that the deputy chairman arrived after she had commenced presiding.

Echoing the sentiments of his party colleague, Senate Opposition Leader Shibli Faraz admonished the move, cautioning against undermining the sanctity of the House. He criticised the decision for Palwasha to chair the session in the deputy chairman's presence, emphasizing the latter's constitutional significance.

In a letter obtained by The Express Tribune, Shibli highlighted international parliamentary norms, deeming it inappropriate for any member to preside over Senate sessions in the deputy chairman's presence. 

He referenced Rule 14 of the Senate's Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business, which designates the deputy chairman to chair sessions in the chairman's absence.


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