ISLAMABAD  - In a rare move, newly elected Senate Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani made public his assets details as he chaired the first session of the Upper House of the Parliament after being elected as chairman on March 12 with the pledge that these (assets) would not increase during his stay in the office.

As the Upper House started its proceedings, Mian Raza Rabbani Monday handed over his assets details to Senate Secretary Amjed Pervez with a pledge that his wealth will not increase even by a single penny till he would remain as the chairman Senate for a period of three years.

Rabbani announced that lawmakers could go through the details of his assets. It is not yet clear whether the Senate Secretariat will publish the details of his assets on official website of Senate. “My wealth will not increase and it will remain the same as it is today when I’ll be retiring after completing my three years tenure,” he gave assurance to the house.

In his remarks, the chairman Senate vowed that his priority would be to uphold the supremacy of parliament. He requested the lawmakers hailing from different political parties and having divergent views must cooperate with him in maintaining the parliamentary rules.

Showing his resolve that he would guard and uphold the dignity of parliament, he warned that any negligence on part of the bureaucracy to undermine the Upper House of parliament would not be tolerated.

“We will place a roll of attendance for the government officers of joint secretary level who (from different ministries) come to the house for taking notes. This must be clear that all the officers will mark their attendance in this register and at the end of the session I will personally check their attendance,” he added.

The chairman Senate said that the standing committees of the house were as key to ensure the accountability by keeping a check and balance on different government departments. He directed all the members to submit their preferences with Senate Secretariat by April 08 in connection to the formation of Senate standing committees.

 Earlier, the four newly elected senators Aurangzeb Khan, Taj Muhammad Afridi, Haji Momin Khan Afridi and Sajjad Hussain from federally administered tribal areas (Fata) took oath. The Election Commission had delayed the election of Senate on four Fata seats after the government issued a controversial ordinance changing voting pattern of these seats.   

However, the Upper House marked by low attendance of lawmakers on private member’s day, left the entire agenda listed on the Orders of the Day un-addressed during the first sitting of its 114th session. The house was adjourned to meet again on Friday at 10am.