The debate whether there should be an investigation into the findings of the Auditor General’s special audit on immigration led by a Bi-Cameral Joint Select Committee or a Senate Select Committee is over. The Church, Chamber of Commerce, Unions and even the Government are supportive of the Opposition’s proposal. But, it’s not all game. There is now controversy over the make-up of the investigative body. The Prime Minister and his Cabinet prefer 3 Government Ministers along with 3 Social Partners reps and 1 Opposition. The Opposition does not agree and has called for there to be one representative from the Government and Opposition, and three from the social partners. Immigration Minister Godwin Hulse commented on the matter, saying all Senate regulations call for a Government majority.
Honourable Godwin Hulse - Minister of Immigration & Police
“I found the Opposition’s ludicrous and let me tell you why; first of all, Cabinet is a part of the legislature and I sit is not attempting to highjack, Cabinet has a quest to a Senate Inquiry fine not a big deal, let go but the Standing Order at #70 clearly call for the composition and it says the composition in relation to the representation basically in the Senate, the government holds the majority in the Senate and therefore the government should hold the majority in the committee but the government is not holding the majority in the committee , the government is going to have three seats and there are going to be four non-government seats how can anybody say that three is bigger than four, the government has surrendered its majority because it will only have three on the committee while the Social Partners will have four so how is that going to be high jacking, please.”
Tomorrow we’ll take a closer look at a Senate inquiry and why the composition has become such a big deal.
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