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“Questions Should Be Addressed To The Relevant Ministers,” Says Sooroojdev Phokeer

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Yesterday, at the opening of the parliamentary sitting, Speaker Sooroojdev Phokeer drew the attention of MPs to the provisions of Articles 21(1) and 21(2) of the Standing Orders. They specify that Members of Parliament must obtain information on matters falling within the remit of the Ministers to whom they are addressed. Article 21(2) stipulates in particular that questions may be put to Ministers concerning the public affairs for which they are officially responsible or any matter of administration falling within their authority. Sooroojdev Phokeer pointed out that the Private Notice Question (PNQ) submitted by the Leader of the Opposition, did not comply with these regulations. According to him, the PNQ contained four different subjects addressed to various ministries, whereas the Prime Minister, to whom the question was addressed, was not responsible for all these subjects. The Speaker also criticised the cross-cutting, vague and imprecise nature of the question, pointing out that Rule 22(1)(a) stipulates that only one question should be asked on a specific subject. “It’s one subject, one question,” he concluded.

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