Montserrat to Host Int’l Parliamentarians for Public Funds Oversight Workshop

A delegation of international parliamentarians and clerks will participate in a workshop in Montserrat from 8-10 November 2017 on parliamentary oversight of public funds.

According to a statement from the Constitution and Commissions Secretariat, the workshop organised by the UK branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA UK) in partnership with the Montserrat Legislative Assembly, is one of a series of activities that makes up the UK Overseas Territories Project under the UK Government’s Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF). The workshop will enable Parliamentarians and Clerks from the Montserrat Legislative Assembly, the Scottish Parliament, Tynwald in the Isle of Man, and the Parliament of Jamaica to share their experiences with their counterparts and build their effectiveness.

At the launch of the project in Miami in March 2017, Montserrat Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Chair, Hon. Leader of the Opposition Easton Taylor-Farrell MLA, highlighted an opportunity to support the PAC in developing its role in providing public financial scrutiny. PACs are a crucial aspect of public life in giving accountability for how taxpayer’s money is spent and Members of PACs are uniquely placed to represent their constituents and ensure they are getting value for money.

Speaking ahead of the workshop Easton Taylor-Farrell MLA stated:  “The purpose of the Workshop is to expose a wider cross section of stakeholders with whom the PAC interacts to gain knowledge of the functions and remit of the Committee. On completion of the workshop the Committee anticipates greater participation, cooperation and awareness from civil society and the public about the work of the Public Accounts Committee.”

The multi-stakeholder workshop will seek to strengthen the knowledge and experience of the PAC through a series of interactive sessions covering PAC inquiries, the relationship with civil society, effective report processes and more. It will be a unique opportunity for the Montserrat PAC to gain insight on how PACs conduct their business in other parts of the world, as well as to share their own knowledge and experience in scrutinising public spending.

In December CPA UK will then welcome a Member of the Montserrat PAC to the UK for the Westminster Workshop along with PAC Members from across the Commonwealth and UK Overseas Territories. The skills-based Westminster Workshop at the UK Parliament will take place over three days, offering practical, interactive sessions to support the development of participating delegates’ skills and expertise.