COPE, COPA Chairmanships to Opposition MPs | Daily News
Party Leaders agree to amendments Standing Orders

COPE, COPA Chairmanships to Opposition MPs

The Party Leaders of Parliament have agreed in principle to the Amendments proposed to the Standing Orders to empower the Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE), the Committee on Public Accounts (COPA) and the Committee on Public Petitions.

A meeting of the Parliamentary Business Committee headed by Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena was held on Tuesday and the above agreement was made during that meeting. The Amendments were presented by Leader of the House and Minister Dinesh Gunawardena.

The Minister stated that a proposal by the Opposition that the Chairmanship of the COPE and COPA should be granted to a Parliamentarian in the Opposition was also agreed during the meeting.

The Amendments proposed to the Standing Orders allow the above mentioned Committees to follow up the recommendations in their reports. The Amendments also say that the Members in the COPE and COPA should not hold Cabinet portfolios. The Reports presented by these Committees should contain recommendations for the proper use of state funds and remedial actions for the observations they make.

The relevant subject Minister should implement the recommendations of those Committees within 8 weeks and submit a statement explaining the future actions he intends to take on those matters. If the Minister thinks that the recommendations should not be implemented, he should give reasons for that and propose alternative measures to ensure proper use of State funds. The Minister is bound to reply to the Committees when problems arise.

The Amendments also say that the quorum of the COPE, COPA and the Committee on Public Petitions should be five Members, and if any Member fails to attend three Committee meetings in a row without a valid reason, that Member’s Committee Membership will be considered abandoned.

 


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