Parliament sitting adjourned with 10 MPs in attendance despite repeated appeals

Parliamentarians pictured during a sitting. (Photo/People's Majlis)

The parliamentary sitting slated for Wednesday was adjourned as the legally mandated quorum to hold a sitting was not met despite repeated appeals to lawmakers to present themselves for the sitting.

Wednesday’s parliamentary sitting was slated for 9:00am. Repeated attempts were made to commence the sitting until 11:05am – one attempt at 9:30am and another attempt at 10:00am.

“I have repeatedly waited on the quorum to be met in order to hold today’s sitting. It is five minutes past 11:00, but the quorum has still not been met. Henceforth, I have decided to adjourn today’s sitting from this point on,” Speaker Mohamed Aslam who was presiding over the sitting said.

“Currently, there are only 10 lawmakers present at the floor,” he added.

Speaker Mohamed Aslam chairs a parliamentary sitting. (Photo/People's Majlis)

Aslam underscored that some lawmakers were present on the parliament premises as he waited to commence the sitting despite which they had not presented themselves to the floor after the quorum bell was rung.

It is unclear why the lawmakers had not presented themselves for the sitting.

As per the constitution, 22 lawmakers from the 87-lawmaker parliamentary assembly are required to be present to hold a parliamentary sitting.

While attempts to hold a parliamentary sitting on Wednesday concluded unsuccessfully, many works remain pending in the parliament – with the electoral term of the ongoing 19th parliamentary assembly set to conclude next week.

At Tuesday’s sitting, Speaker Aslam revealed that there are 21 questions posed to ministers by lawmakers that have not been scheduled and 322 letters of complaint submitted to the parliament that remain unanswered.

He appealed for cooperation from lawmakers at Tuesday’s parliamentary sitting in order to conclude these works.

The last sitting of the incumbent parliamentary assembly is slated for next Monday. The incoming 20th parliamentary assembly comprising of 93 lawmakers will be sworn in on May 28th