Government to prioritize Hurricane Dorian efforts in parliament

Government to prioritize Hurricane Dorian efforts in parliament

NASSAU, THE BAHAMAS- The government will delay debate on several bills tabled prior to its summer break to prioritize Hurricane Dorian reconstruction efforts, said Leader of Government Business in Parliament Renward Wells.

“We are seeking to make sure that we do all that we can legislatively to move the reconstruction effort forward and to rebuild the lives of the Bahamian people both in Abaco and Grand Bahama and in the wider Bahamas,” Wells told Eyewitness News Online on Wednesday.

“We are seeking to try and get the country back as quickly as possible to a sense of normalcy so our legislative agenda is going to reflect that.

“We believe that we have the opportunity, now having gone through this crisis to rebuild bigger, better, stronger, more resilient, and that’s what we intend to do for and on behalf of the Bahamian people.

“In addition to that, other ministries will be bringing forth legislation to move their ministries forward progressively so the Bahamian people can look at that and can just keep their eyes on the Parliament.

“I think they are going to see some creative things moving forward.”

Among those integral bills still on the House agenda are The Ombudsman Bill, 2017,  the Integrity Commission Bill, 2017, the Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority Bill, 2019, and more.

But Wells said these bills are still on the agenda of the House.

“The government’s intention is still to debate those pieces of legislation but as I said we will be bringing new pieces of legislation as well the agenda is dynamic,” he said.

Last week, House Speaker Halson Moultrie, who appeared as a guest on on Beyond the Headlines with Clint Watson, said he believes more focus needs to be placed on the government’s legislative agenda.

“I think we have had a pretty busy legislative agenda so far,” Moultrie said.

“The difficulty that I discovered is that we still have a lot of matters which are at the first reading. So we have a lot of bills pending that need to get the second and third reading and passing stage.

“But I believe that certain circumstances have developed and the government has shifted priority accordingly and of course there were a number of other activities that were sort of distracting but I believe that much more focus should be made and placed on the legislative agenda of the government, because regrettably in this society, the non-governmental institution have not matured and developed significantly to carry the country and to carry the economy and we still rely a lot on the incentives and the initiates of government to move society ahead.”