June 4, 2022
The Youth General Assembly (YGA) launched its 26th Youth Parliamentary Session at the Punjab University’s Quaid-e-Azam Campus on Saturday, with students from across Punjab participating in the event.
The event simulates an average session of the National Assembly, where important decisions that shape Pakistan’s law and secure democratic processes are taken. Students are tasked with speaking on any one of the four topics provided in the order of the day, and are judged on how well they speak as well as address a policy point.
In today’s session, participants presented their arguments and resolutions for the ongoing water crisis, barriers to freedom of speech, implementation of the Single National Curriculum (SNC), and the question of overseas Pakistanis’ right to vote.
At the end of the event, six of the best performing students were nominated for Leader of the House and Leader of Opposition. The participants were encouraged to cast their vote and elect a student to their positions in the next session, slated for July 2.
The YGA’s Youth Parliamentary Session is not only an exercise in honing the debating and oratory skills of young men and women seeking a future in politics and law, but also a gateway for a select few aspirants to become a part of the organizer’s larger project, the YGA Shadow Cabinet.
The YGA Shadow Cabinet borrows from the tradition of Westminster, where a group of opposition spokespeople form an alternative cabinet to that of the Government. Members of a shadow cabinet “shadow” or parallel the positions of each member of the actual cabinet. While shadow ministers have no executive powers, they are responsible for scrutinizing government policies and actions, as well as suggest alternative policies.