15th NA make more legislation than preceding three assemblies: Fafen


ISLAMABAD: The Free and Fair Election Network (Fafen), a leading non-governmental election watchdog, has released a report scrutinising the five-year performance of the 15th National Assembly.

According to the Fafen report, the assembly faced complex political, economic, judicial, and constitutional challenges during its tenure.

Despite these hurdles, the National Assembly effectively addressed and legislated on various issues, surpassing the legislative activity of the preceding three assemblies, it said.

“With a commendable commitment to legislative work, the National Assembly passed a total of 322 laws, surpassing the accomplishments of the last three assemblies. This assembly also managed to pass numerous private bills,” the report said.

Fafen’s report indicated that 99 private members’ bills were presented, reflecting an active engagement of parliamentarians in lawmaking.

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“This National Assembly also witnessed significant political events, including the successful motion of a vote of no-confidence against the former prime minister through a successful movement. In the past, similar motions against Prime Ministers Benazir Bhutto and Shaukat Aziz had not gained traction. Remarkably, the 15th National Assembly marked the first time that such a motion was successful in Pakistan’s political history,” it said

“This assembly was the first since 1977 to receive a positive analysis from a prime minister towards its dissolution. The PDM-led government achieved 54% of its total legislation within just 16 months. Similarly, the previous PTI government managed to achieve 46% of its legislative agenda in approximately three years.”

The National Assembly held a total of 52 sessions, accounting for 1,310 hours and 47 minutes of legislative activity, the report said.

The report revealed that former PTI prime minister participated in 9% of the sessions, while the current Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif participated in 17% of them. Primarily in his role as the Leader of the Opposition, Shehbaz Sharif participated in 27 per cent of legislation.

With regard to attendance, the assembly recorded a 73% average attendance rate in the first year, which declined to 34% in the final year. The assembly identified instances of misconduct 131 times during its sessions.

Despite facing numerous challenges, the National Assembly approved 152 resolutions and witnessed 9,765 questions along with 423 call attention notices, it said.

In an unusual move, the assembly displayed unity as except for seven members no member abstained from participating in discussions during the assembly proceedings.

“Out of the total 442 working days in the 52 sessions, the assembly held moments of protest for 74 times, amounting to a duration of 34 hours and 54 minutes. During these protests, 152 charter statements and 63 bills related to FATF rules, business, and economy were discussed,” the report said.

To the start of every session, the national anthem and a selected Hadith were made mandatory by the NA.

In terms of legislative achievements, the National Assembly outperformed the combined legislative activity of the three previous assemblies, showing a commendable dedication to legislative work in addressing key national issues.

The report by Fafen underscores the importance of parliamentary engagement and cooperation for effective governance and lawmaking in Pakistan.

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