Response by Hon. Speaker on claims circulating on social media

Honourable Members, I will now address the issue of the claims circulating on social media, television, radio and published in the newspapers.  This is an insinuation against the Office of the Speaker and the Secretariat.  The actions of the Speaker and the Secretariat are in accordance with, and always are, with the Standing Orders of Parliament.  The Speaker has not prevented debate on the floor of Parliament.  The Speaker, with the assistance of the Secretariat, is there to facilitate the debate and ensure this is efficiently and effectively conducted within the parameters of the Standing Orders of Parliament and other parliamentary procedures and practices dictated by precedents.


As all the Members of the Business Committee are aware, including Members from both sides of the House, when Questions and Motions are submitted, the Secretariat conducts an extensive vetting process in accordance with the provisions of the Standing Orders.  This also involves continuous consultations with the respective Parties represented in Parliament.  The Speaker is also involved in this process.  It is important to note that during the vetting process, Questions and Motions which do not meet the requirements stipulated in the Standing Orders, as well as previous decisions of the Business Committee, are ruled out of order, and therefore, would not appear on the Order Paper.


When this process is concluded, then the Questions and Motions are further put before the Business Committee for final consideration.  It is also important to note that the Business Committee will have the final say in all businesses that will be dealt with in the Parliament Sittings.  The Standing Orders of Parliament are the guiding rules that regulates proceedings and procedures of Parliament.  In that regard, it is imperative for all Honourable Members to fully understand the provisions, and therefore, do adhere to the guiding provisions of the Standing Orders.


Thank you, Honourable Members.