ISLAMABAD: Speaker National Assembly Dr Fehmida Mirza on Wednesday said the speaker is custodian of the house whose rulings should be respected as has been provided in Rules of the Procure and Conduct of Business.
Speaking to media representatives after inaugurating new campus of Pakistan's premier training and research institute for national parliament and provincial legislatures named Pakistan Institute of Parliamentary Services (PIPS), the speaker declined to comment on the recent petitions filed by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI).
“I have not yet received notice. I will comment only after going through that,” she said.
When asked whether her ruling is challengeable, she referred to the Rule 28 of the National Assembly what she said makes the whole matter clear.
“Whenever the Speaker decides or gives ruling on any matter on the floor of the House or in the office on the file, as the case may be, it shall not be called in question, and that shall be final except on a motion for rescinding it,” says the Rule 28.
She said the speaker is elected by the elected representatives in National Assembly so her ruling is required to be respected.
About the upcoming budget session, she hoped that all parliamentarians would observe decorum of the house and give their constructive response on the budgetary proposals.
When asked about her response about Leader of Opposition in the NA Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan who did not meet in her chamber, the speaker said the she had asked him to appear as per convenience.
In her inaugural address, the speaker National Assembly thanked the US government and the USAID, for their support for construction and provision of a fully equipped and furnished PIPS new campus at a cost of $11.5 million.
“This is, indeed, a valuable gift from the people of United States to the developing democracy of Pakistan,” she said adding the parliamentarians are required to be well-versed with all legal, social and strategic developments, taking place in the society.
She said the executive and the judiciary had long established their respective training institutes but the parliament was kept deprived of any such supportive mechanism.
She said it was through strict belt tightening by the National Assembly that purchased this piece of land for PIPS at the cost of Rs. 34 million from our own budget and the operations would be funded by in the ratio of one-third and two-third by the Senate and National Assembly respectively.
“This building is a gift from the American people,” said the US Ambassador Cameron Munter in his remarks at the ceremony that was also attended by the US Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Tara Sonenshine.
He said the building was envisaged in 2005 and has been turned into reality after seven-year untiring efforts of the speaker NA and PIPS team, adding the institute would held the legislative branch of the parliament in legislation to help strengthen democracy.
Deputy Chairman Senate Sabir Baloch said the PIPS campus is not only model for the country but also the Asian region that would help strengthen parliamentary performance having ultimate positive impacts on democratic system.
Later, the speaker along with US dignitaries unveiled the plaques of the four-floor new PIPS campus featuring offices, seminar halls, a library, and a hi-tech auditorium.
The electricity for the building is generated, in part, by the first and largest solar power station installed on the building in Pakistan and the solar power is synchronised with the grid-supplied electricity.
The building, designed by prominent architect Nayyar Ali Dada, has been equipped with highest level of quake resistance.