The Upper House plans for the next session

The Upper house closed yesterday by assigning committees responsibilities on issues for legislative and review works for the next session.

Speaking in the closing ceremony, National Council Chairman read out on overview of the resolutions of the 12thsession and identified agendas for committees.

He also talked about review recommendations submitted to government, acceptance and non-acceptance of recommendations submitted to National Assembly and the need for the house to keep a track on the answers presented by the ministers during Q and A session.

He said that the amendment of the Tobacco Control Act 2014 was not easy to make and while amending it, the house thought about the welfare of the people and country.

On candidate having to have ten years of experience under National Council Act 2014, he said that it was not amended with disregard for the Constitution nor was it denying opportunity to the youths but he said it was for strengthening Constitutional democracy.

He also talked about the Economic Stimulus Plan and their recommendation that it be discontinued in the future. He said that in the future political parties will borrow from the foreign countries to fulfill their pledges which will affect the sovereignty and independence of the country. He stated that he was not referring to the relationship with the Government of India, which he respected and valued.

The Good Governance Committee was given responsibilities to take up legislative and review works on amendment of the Local Government Act 2009, Election Commission Act 2008, review of the Annual Anti-Corruption Commission Report and review of the State of the Nation Report by the Prime Minister.

The Legislative committee is to also work on the Attorney General (Amendment) Act, 2006, amendment of the National Assembly Act, 2008 and a review of the Right to Information Bill 2014

The Economic Affairs Committee will continue with the review report on the LPG and Kerosene issue, ratification of Trade and Economic Cooperation Agreement between the Government of the Kingdom of Thailand and the Royal Government of Bhutan, review the National Budget and Appropriation Bill 2014-2015 and review the unemployment issue in the country.

The Natural Resources and Environment Committee will review the policy developments related to Hydro Power Projects, the impact assessment of mining and quarry activities and review issues related to Tsamdro and Sokshing.

The Foreign Relations Committee will review the Convention on Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards.

The Social and Cultural Affairs Committee will follow-up on the resolutions of the 12thsession and screening of the unresolved issues from the Dzongkhag Tshogdus.

The Public Accounts Committee will review the Annual Audit Report and Performance Audit Report.

While reviewing, adopting and passing bills/legislations, the Chairperson said that the main objective of the House was to fulfill the hopes and aspirations of the people and to further strengthen the democratic system in the country.

The Chairperson in closing remarks thanked His Majesty the King, His Majesty the Fourth King for their wise leadership and HH the Je Khenpo, Je Thrizur, all the Rinpoches and religious practitioners in the country for their prayers and blessings.

He also thanked the Prime Minister and the Royal Government for their generous support to the National Council in carrying out its task as enshrined in the Constitution and the Members of the National Council for their active contribution in the deliberations.

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