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Thursday December 02, 2021

Election of chairman, deputy: Rabbani submits amendment to Senate rules

May 08, 2021

ISLAMABAD: Former Senate chairman Raza Rabbani on Friday submitted amendments to the Rule 9 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Senate, 2012, in the Senate Secretariat, which deals with elections to the offices of chairman and deputy chairman. Mr Rabbani said that detailed rules were lacking and as a consequence of which elections to the office of chairman had become controversial and ended in the litigation before a court of law.

“The parliament should resolve its own disputes,” he said Under proposed amendments, a new ‘Fourth Schedule’ has been drafted that suggests the first meeting of the Senate for elections shall be chaired by the outgoing chairman and in his absence by a person nominated by the president. The Senate Secretariat shall provide a voters’ list to the presiding officer and any member who moves an application.

Polling agents of contesting candidates, or candidates themselves may inspect the polling booth before the poll. Marking a ballot paper should be specified and provided in Annexure ‘A’ & ‘B’ to the schedule.

A member, who has, inadvertently, spoiled the ballot paper, after satisfying the presiding officer, may be issued a fresh ballot paper. A procedure should be specified to invalidate a ballot paper shall be invalidated.

Amendments also include right to appeal against the decision of the presiding officer. The Senate Secretariat shall notify, before the elections a committee, comprising past three, in-succession, former chairmen to hear objections, if any. The committee shall decide by a majority vote and it shall also decide all objections in the same setting.