St Kitts and Nevis (WINN): The Government is moving to establish the long anticipated Public Accounts Committee. That announcement was made in the House of Assembly Tuesday (May 23) by Prime Minister Dr. Timothy Harris
“We want to move to establish this Public Accounts Committee. Accordingly, I can report that I have written to the leader for the opposition for him to propose two nominees to be part of a five member accounts committee. The government has already nominated three members. We therefore await the nomination from the opposition one of whom will be the Chairperson of this committee. Although there is no legal requirement, my cabinet has determined that we will give the privilege to the leader of opposition to nominate someone to Chair the Public Accounts Committee.”
Dr Harris says once he received the nomination from the Opposition a resolution will be brought before Parliament
“Once received I shall, as the Minister of Finance, bring the appropriate resolution to the National Assembly, for the approval of the assembly. My government intends to have a fresh start and a functioning of this extremely important committee, unfortunately however, there is little guide to the activation of this process as there has been no history of a functioning Public Accounts Committee in St Kitts and Nevis.”
A Public Accounts Committee is generally expected to examine the accounts showing the appropriation of sums granted to Parliament to meet public expenditure.
It can scrutinize public spending in the context of value for money and hold the government and civil service to account for the efficient delivery of public services. It is traditionally expected to look at how rather than why government spends money.