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Parliament: 30 Questions To Acting Prime Minister Steven Obeegadoo

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With Pravind Jugnauth away on an official trip to India, Steven Obeegadoo has been acting Prime Minister since Saturday 16th April and will preside over the parliamentary session on Tuesday 19th April. He will answer questions during Prime Minister’s Question Time (PMQT) and Private Notice Questions (PNQ) in place of Pravind Jugnauth.

A second round for the DPM

This is the second time that Steven Obeegadoo, the Leader of the Militant Platform, DPM and Minister of Housing and Tourism, has held this highest office in the country.  The previous time was from 30 October to 12 November 2021 when Pravind Jugnauth attended COP 26. Steven Obeegadoo had his first official ceremony as Acting PM at the launch of the MauHeritage mobile application at Labourdonnais on Monday 18 April.

On Tuesday, he will have to give details to a wave of controversial questions. Patrice Armance, the Chief Whip of the Opposition, who will unfortunately be absent from Parliament as a contact case of Covid 19, tells Le Matinal “we hope that Steeven Obeegadoo will ensure transparency in his answers and that he manages to give details on all 30 questions that will be put to him. The Opposition hopes that he performs his role as interim Prime Minister well. We will follow his performance. Tuesday’s parliamentary session will determine his strength in the post.” Patrice Armance was to ask him about the promotion exercises within the MPF.

A flurry of controversial issues

As mentioned above, there will be a flurry of controversial issues presented to the Parliament.

MMM MP, Rajesh Bhagwan will ask about the mission of Dick Ng Sui Wa, Chairman of the Information and Communication Technology Authority (ICTA) to France, the approval of this mission and the amount of his Per Diem. He will later report on the incidents at the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) in Plaine Magnien involving Bobby Hureeram and Stephan Toussaint and the list of names of those present. He will ask whether sanitary rules had been respected at this place, which was supposed to remain closed under the Quarantine Act.

Following the case of Marie-Ange Brique who had been declared dead instead of her step sister, Ivan Collendavelloo will remind Steven Obeegadoo of the need to facilitate legal documents at the registry offices in such cases.

The question of the PTr leader, Arvin Boolell is around the 95 kilos of cocaine, valued at Rs 1.9 billion, which had been discovered in a backhoe in July 2019. MP Deven Nagalingum will second him on the subject in another question. Nando Bodha, Leader of the Rassemblement Mauricien, will stay on the subject of drugs and will ask him about the seizure of Rs 3.7 billion worth of drugs at Pointe-aux-Canonniers on 02 May 2021.

The subject of police brutality will be raised by PMSD MP, Richard Duval, who will want details on the number of cases of police brutality recorded since January 2020, the number of investigations underway, the investigations completed and the number of police officers involved. Adil Ameer Meea will ask him to find out from the Commissioner of Police the number of suspended police officers and the amount of their annual income.

The Mauritius Duty Free Paradise Co Ltd controversy will be brought forward by Arianne Navarre Marie.

Subhashnee Luchmun Roy will query about the issue of electoral reform and the proportional representation of women.

Rodrigues MP, Christian Leopold will want more information on the Plaine Corail airstrip expansion and its financing.

Osman Mohammed’s question will be about the Passenger Variant Dornier Aircraft, the reasons for its acquisition, the cost, and details on its performance and safety. Earlier, he will want the identities of those at the head of the Public Service Commission.

Joanna Berenger will want to know if the Prime Minister’s Office has the request for a Commission of Enquiry and its position on the possible trafficking of cultural property still ongoing from December 2021.

The session on Tuesday 19th April will be eventful and Steeven Obeegadoo will be in the crosshairs of parliamentarians. The National Environment Cleaning Authority (NECA) Bill will be on the agenda for first reading. The second reading will be the Town Planners Council Bill while the Beach Authority (Amendment) Bill will have its third reading. This amendment will give more power to the authority to serve fixed fines on any person in cases of specific offences committed on public beaches, offences in any commercial premises, food-truck or any other commercial structure on a public beach, cases of illegal development or activity on a public beach and tree cutting among others.

The other PQs will be around the subjects of education, health, vaccination of civil servants and also, the reasons for possible increases in the CEB for large consumers.

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