Basseterre, St. Kitts, July 03, 2020 (SKNIS): With the current social and physical distancing protocols currently in place resulting from the COVID-19 Pandemic, the historic Sitting of Parliament slated for Wednesday, July 08 has been moved to a larger venue, the St. Kitts Marriott Resort. However, the necessity to move highlights the importance of the National Assembly to have a new home.
Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris raised the issue during his inaugural monthly press conference on Friday, July 03, 2020, at NEMA Conference Room, his first since being re-elected at the June 05 polls.
“The new Speaker of the National Assembly will be mandated to coordinate this effort from site selection, designs, drawings, budgeting and building to actualize this new home for Parliament,” said Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris.
Dr. Harris said that the construction of a new Parliament building is fitting given the increased operations over the past five years.
“The National Assembly is at the fulcrum of the Westminster Model of democracy. Since 2015 our Team Unity Administration has done much to advance the Parliament’s role in nation-building. We have met more often than in the past. We have passed legislation that ensures that a Motion of No Confidence is heard within a 21 day period. By so doing, we have prevented the past travesty of justice when the bygone regime held a Motion of No Confidence in abeyance for 26 months, reducing the Parliament to an instrument in futility,” he said.
He stated that during the upcoming cycle of St. Kitts and Nevis’ Parliament, his government intends to further strengthen the operations of the National Assembly.
“The Public Accounts Committee has also been strengthened by my administration thereby giving Parliamentarians greater scrutiny over the financial affairs of the Government. This Parliament will complete the review of the Statutory Rules & Orders (SR&Os) of the National Assembly to ensure their relevance to the evolution of time. The strengthening of the Parliament, improvements in its efficiency and efficacy will contribute to the safer and stronger future for a democratic St Kitts and Nevis,” said the prime minister.
The historic Sitting of Parliament is slated for Wednesday, July 08, 2020. Elected members will be sworn in as Members of the National Assembly, and the Speaker and Deputy Speaker will also be elected.