PAC Chairman: Accounts Committee needs upgrade

Public Accounts Committee Chairman Hon. Julius Espat will propose changes  at next Wednesday’s Sitting of the House  of Representatives that could improve his committee’s ability to function.

Espat, who has been trying to get the PAC to meet and peruse the Auditor General’s report since last year, said that the incumbent-dominated structure of the PAC has served to prevent the committee from getting anything work done.

“We need to reconfigure the PAC,” Espat said.

Under the new structure the committee would be comprised of two members from the incumbent government, two from opposition (one of who will be the chairman), and three senators,  who represent the churches, union’s and Business Community.

The changes would also require PAC members to be non-ministers of government.

On Tuesday, Espat submitted the motion to be placed on the Order Paper for the upcoming meeting.

Through the standing orders of the House of Representatives, the PAC is responsible for examining and reporting on how the government spends public funds as well as evaluating the auditor general’s reports and any other account that may be referred to it.

“If we are serious about good governance in this county, we need to put the power in the hands of the People,” Espat said on Thursday.

In his justification for the proposed change Espat said the current structure of the PAC has “relegated such a very important committee to irrelevance,” because the ministers of government ar  (Continued on pg. 3)

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