322 unanswered complaints, 21 unanswered questions as parliamentary term nears end

Speaker Mohamed Aslam chairs a parliamentary sitting. (Photo/People's Majlis)

Parliament Speaker Mohamed Aslam, on Monday, stated that there are 322 unanswered letters of complaint and 21 unanswered questions pending as the ongoing 19th parliamentary assembly nears the end of its electoral term.

The last sitting of the incumbent parliamentary assembly is slated for next Monday.

While opening Tuesday’s sitting, Speaker Aslam noted that there are 21 questions posed to ministers by lawmakers that still remain pending. He added that he was unsuccessful in efforts to slate some of these questions for Tuesday’s sitting as ministers and some of the members who submitted the question were unavailable to attend the sitting.

Nevertheless, Speaker Aslam affirmed his commitment to complete the backlog before the conclusion of the term.

“The Parliament Secretariate will work on scheduling additional questions for tomorrow’s sitting. I urge lawmakers who have posed these questions to make time for this,” he added.

Speaking further, the Speaker noted that 322 letters of complaint submitted to the parliament remain unanswered.

“The usual procedure followed by the parliament is to forward the letters addressed to the speaker to the General Purpose Committee, which then in turn, will answer these questions or forward them to other relevant committees concerning the complaint,” he said.

“The pending ones at present are letters that have been forwarded to other committees as they cannot be answered by the General Purpose Committee. Henceforth, I urge committee chairpersons to reply to letters before the conclusion of the term,” he added.

Speaker Aslam noted that there was no obstruction to holding additional sittings on Thursday and next Sunday for the purpose of completing the pending works.

The outgoing 19th parliamentary spent many days in a deadlock after no-confidence motions were simultaneously filed against the former speaker Mohamed Nasheed and former deputy speaker Eva Abdulla. Nasheed, following a Supreme Court ruling deeming the halt in the parliamentary works unconstitutional, had voluntary resigned – resolving the deadlock.

Committee works had also been stalled due to changes to the composition of the parliament following switch in political parties among lawmakers.

The incoming 20th parliamentary assembly comprising of 93 lawmakers will be sworn in on May 28th