ISLAMABAD: Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani has proposed to maintain the numerical strength of the Senate by distributing the eight seats of erstwhile Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) between the provinces.
The total number of seats in the Senate is going to reduce to 96 from the existing 104 as eight FATA senators will retire after the tribal districts merger with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
However, Sanjrani has suggested equally increasing the number of general seats from each province from existing 23 to 25 – in a phased manner.
According to the Constitution, each of the four provinces are represented by 23 senators regardless of their population, while FATA and Islamabad Capital Territory were represented by eight and two senators respectively, all of whom serve six-year terms.
Sanjrani has proposed that four seats, one for each province, be increased in the forthcoming Senate election scheduled for March, 2021, and four more seats be increased in the Senate polls to be held in March, 2024, with a view to provide for continuity in terms of total number of seats.
In a letter addressed to Senator Javed Abbasi, Sanjrani has referred the matter to the Senate Standing Committee on Law & Justice – headed by Abbasi – to examine, deliberate and submit a report with such recommendations including suggestions for a constitutional amendment.
In the letter, the Senate chairman has highlighted that the term of office of four members out of the existing eight members from Fata shall expire on March 11, 2021, whereas the term of office of the remaining four shall expire on March 11, 2024.
Resultantly, number of members of the Senate will be reduced to one hundred in March, 2021 after expiry of the term of four FATA senators and to 96 after expiry of term of remaining four members from FATA in March, 2024.