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Tuesday December 07, 2021

Summoning Senate session: Input of three key institutions sought

May 02, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The parliamentary affairs ministry has sought input from three key national institutions on risk assessment/management regarding social distancing for the NA and Senate sessions.

Quickly reacting to a letter of the Senate chairman, which called for convening a session of the Upper House , the ministry sent a missive to the National Disaster Management Authority, National Command and Operation Centre and National Health Services Regulation & Coordination, seeking their inputs. Copies of both the letters are available with The News.

The parliamentary affairs ministry’s letter said pursuant to the proposal of the Senate Chairman, all the three organizations have been approached for their input on risk assessment/management regarding social distancing etc., for summoning the sessions of the two parliamentary chambers. They have been requested to furnish the relevant guidelines/Standard Operating Procedures as soon as possible.

It also said the parliamentary affairs ministry was always ready and willing to facilitate the sitting of the Senate. As mentioned in referred letter, the Covid-19 is the most dangerous, contagious and a new phenomenon for which the national institutions are providing guidelines based upon life saving measures suggested by the experts particularly from these three national platforms.

The Senate chairman’s letter drew the attention of the parliamentary affairs ministry towards the duly approved provisional calendar of sessions of the upper house for the parliamentary years 2020-21 according to which the 298th session was scheduled to be held from March 20. However, due to Covid-19 pandemic, it could not be held during the months of March and April.

The chairman noted that the Senate being the House of Federation had to play its important role of national cohesion, representation and oversight in the present situation. Accordingly, he wanted that the parliamentary affairs ministry may initiate a summary to the president for summoning of senate session in the first week of May.