Parliament starts late; Speaker reminds MPs of need to follow rules Loop Cayman Islands

The content originally appeared on: News Americas Now

Black Immigrant Daily News

The content originally appeared on: Cayman Compass

Members of Parliament (MPs) received a reminder from Katherine Ebanks-Wilks, the Speaker of Parliament, that the proper start time of Parliament is 10am after the December 12 sitting of Parliament failed to start on time.

Emphasizing the importance of following the rules of Parliament, the Speaker said:

Honourable Members, when we adjourned last Thursday, members were advised that the house would resume at 10am today, Monday 12 December and I would just like to remind members of Standing Order 10(1) which expressly states that every sitting shall start at 10am unless the presiding officer otherwise directs.

While the point may seem trivial to some members of the public, “the devil is the details,” as they say.

Here, the fine point is that MPs do not appear to have any discretion under the Parliament Standing Orders to start a meeting later than 10am, which seems to be what happened today (December 12).

Enforcing the Parliament Standing Orders, the Speaker said: “As Speaker, I would like to start our meetings on time, and I encourage you to schedule your meetings accordingly so that it does not prevent the house from commencing at the agreed time.”

The Speaker further noted that the departure from the Parliament Standing Orders meant that members of the public who signed onto the live stream to hear Parliamentary proceedings also had to wait.

Regarding this, the Speaker added that while “members of the government have been here at the house of Parliament in meetings since 10am,” unfortunately, “The viewing public will not appreciate that” fact, and “it just looks like we are starting late.”

To avoid this issue reoccurring, the Speaker encouraged MPs to schedule their “meetings accordingly so that it does not prevent the house from commencing at the agreed time.”