The Standing Orders Committee of the House of Assembly (HOA) has elected Works Minister Kye Rymer as its new chairman; removing Territorial At-Large Representative Carvin Malone from the post.
Rymer’s appointment was made through a resolution that only passed in the House last Tuesday, February 21. But based on the HOA’s Standing Orders — the rules by which the House is governed — this exercise is nearly a year late.
According to Standing Order 74(2), the chairman of the committee must be a government minister, and Malone has not been a minister since he was demoted as Health Minister since May 2022.
This means that the members of the Standing Orders Committee — namely Malone, Rymer, Premier Dr Natalio Wheatley, Health Minister Marlon Penn, and Opposition Leader Julian Fraser has been derelict in their duty to elect a chairman from among themselves for several months.
It is not clear how many times the committee met since that time, if at all.
In past years, legislators from varying Houses of Assembly have been selective or neglectful in how they comply with HOA rules or some local laws specific to their responsibilities.
One glaring example is with present and past lawmakers’ breach of the Register of Interests Act. The Register of Interests is, effectively, a record kept of the financial interests of HOA members. Its purpose is to give them the mechanism to publicly declare any private interests which may conflict or may be perceived to conflict with their public duties. The Registrar of Interests Communicated to the House of Assembly that she has had great difficulty getting lawmakers to declare within the legally stipulated time.
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