Absence of minister irks legislators, call off meeting

Ijaz Kakakhel

The Senate Standing Committee on Petroleum on Tuesday was called off due to absence of the concerned minister. The Senate Committee which met under the chairmanship of Senator Mohammad Abdul Qadir at Parliament House. The committee commenced with the briefing on the Bill titled “The Petroleum (Amendment) Bill, 2022. During the briefing Senator Fida Muhammad raised point on the repetitive absence of the minister. Senator Aon Abbass while endorsing the view point raised by Senator Fida Muhammad compelled into a heated argument with the Secretary Petroleum and consequently the members walked out.

The chairman committee tried to convince the members who walked out, but the meeting was called off after a short interlude. Senator Rukhsana Zuberi was of the view that meetings are being cancelled and called off, on the same reason time and again, she said that it has now become a norm to call off meetings like this. Either the ministers are absent causing bills to remain pending or the members committee are non cooperative. She said that committee meetings are above party lines and we should change this precedence and continue this meeting in the best Public Interest. Senator Rukhsana Zuberi insisted that the meeting should continue, however the chairman committee decided to call off the meeting as a token of respect for his fellow members.