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Sunday August 14, 2022

Govt to table NAB, election bills in joint session today

Refusing to assent, President Arif Alvi had returned these bills for “consideration and detailed deliberations” by the Parliament

By Web Desk
June 09, 2022
Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarrar speaks during a session of the National Assembly. Picture courtesy NA
Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarrar speaks during a session of the National Assembly. Picture courtesy NA 

ISLAMABAD: A joint session of the Parliament will take up National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and election reforms bills today that were returned by President Arif Alvi last week for “consideration and detailed deliberations” by the Parliament and its committees.

A 12-point agenda for today’s sitting has been released by the National Assembly Secretariat, according to which, Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarrar will table The Elections (Amendment) Bill, 2022 and The National Accountability (Amendment) Bill, 2022 for approval from the house.

On Saturday, President Alvi refused to sign the bills and returned them to Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif as he "was not informed" about the legislative proposal under Article 46 before they were tabled.

Dr Alvi had also noted that the bills were passed “in haste and without due diligence”. He had pointed out that both the bills have a “far-reaching impact on society” and should have been discussed in detail.

The National Assembly had passed the bills to abolish the PTI government's election reforms giving overseas Pakistanis the right to vote through i-Voting and electronic voting machines (EVMs), as well as the NAB laws.

After the president's refusal to sign the bills, the federal government decided to convene a joint session to pass them.

Article 75(2) reads: “When the president has returned a bill to the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament), it shall be reconsidered by the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) in joint sitting and, if it is again passed, with or without amendment, by the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament), by the votes of the majority of the members of both Houses present and voting, it shall be deemed for the purposes of the Constitution to have been passed by both Houses and shall be presented to the president, and the president shall give his assent within 10 days, failing which such assent shall be deemed to have been given.”