Anybody Home with the Door Crack???

Posted: August 20, 2013 in General Delivery

Kendal V. O. Major, MP is the Speaker of the Honourable House of Assembly of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. And the Speaker, we must recognize, wields the ultimate authority of the House of Assembly in session.

A few points of education must be noted so that those who write as journalists should know the rules of the House and the authority vested in the Speaker of the House according to those rules.

Nothing that the Honourable Mr Speaker Kendal V. O. Major has done in the last two sittings of the House goes against long-standing practice.

Kendal Major MR SPEAKER

According to the UK Parliamentary Website:

The Speaker has full authority to make sure MPs follow the rules of the House during debates. This can include:
directing an MP to withdraw remarks if, for example, they use abusive language (or unsubstantiated by facts)
suspending the sitting of the House due to serious disorder
suspending MPs who are deliberately disobedient – known as naming
asking MPs to be quiet so Members can be heard
Erskine May’s Parliamentary Practice, an authority on the parliamentary rule system which the Bahamas parliament relies, states that, “Subject to the rules of order in debate, a member may state whatever he thinks fit in debate, however offensive it may be to the feelings, or injurious to the character, of individuals; and he is protected by his privilege from any action for liable, as well as from any other question or molestation.”

The rule of order in the debate requires that the Member presents facts, and particularly when called upon to do so by the Speaker.

And no matter how political pundits attempt to twist the rule or the right of the Speaker to allow comment or to decide to expunge a comment, it is in the Speaker’s right to do so if a members contribution violates another members privilege and no facts are presented.

In the recent case where the Leader of the Opposition was named, the Speaker asked the Opposition Leader to present facts or withdraw the statement.

Former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham in Parliament named a prominent citizen for allegedly “bouncing cheques written to the Treasury” when questioned about cheques written to the Treasury and signed by Deputy Prime Minister Frank Watson.

Hubert FROGGY Ingraham was brutal in using his privilege as a Member of Parliament to call out or embarrass members of Parliament and private citizens.

Is there anybody home with the door crack that would recall the Speaker at the time, Madam Speaker Rome Italia Johnson expunging a comment made by Ingraham against a private citizen?

Why then, the double standard applied to the current Speaker? If Madam Speaker Rome Italia Johnson was well within her authority, then so is Mr Speaker Honourable Kendal V. O. Major.

  1. Nichola Sands says:

    This is truly a lesson to those who pretend that they do not know or understand the Rules of the House and the Speaker’s position. Well done.

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