BVI, Caribbeanand International News

16 bills to receive amendments in final HoA Sitting before General Election

16 bills to receive amendments in final HoA Sitting before General Election

Legislators will meet in the House of Assembly (HoA) for the final time this Thursday, March 9, 2023, before the House is dissolved on March 12, 2023, to pave the way for General Election.

The Fourth Sitting of the 5th Session of the 4th House of Assembly is slated to be a busy one as some 16 Bills are to ‘urgently’ receive amendments.

The amount of Bills being rushed through the HoA virtually on the eve of the House being dissolved has caused some concern in the public.

This was acknowledged by At Large Representative Hon Carvin Malone during the resumption of the VIP Let’s Talk radio show on ZBVI 780 AM on March 7, 2023.

At Large Representative Hon Carvin Malone, speaking on the VIP Let’s Talk radio show on ZBVI 780 AM on March 7, 2023, said the HoA has little choice but to urgently facilitate the amendments to the Bills to come before the HoA in its final sitting.

Bills reached Cabinet & HoA late- Hon Malone

Hon Malone explained that, in preparation for the conduct of "mutual evaluations" in March of 2023, as recommended by the Financial Action Task Force, the BVI Financial Services Commission (BVIFSC) has caused the introduction of 16 Bills for First Readings in the House of Assembly.

He said these Bills will receive their Second and Third Readings on Thursday, March 9, 2023.

“Almost everyone is very concerned about the lateness that these 16 Bills being introduced to the House at this time. Unfortunately, this is when they were presented, both to the Cabinet and to the House of Assembly to be done. In preparation for these mutual evaluations, it was prudent for us, it was critical for us to have them laid in the House and be examined.”

Hon Malone further detailed that members of the Financial Services Commission were able to come before the HoA in an informal meeting to explain the fact that most of the amendments are a number of “housekeeking” [matters] and they were areas cited by the Financial Services Task Force to be rectified for the next evaluation.

“So we did inform the Financial Services personnel that it is not acceptable for these Bills to come at the very last minute, and you have to at times go through First, Second and Third Readings, and now that the House is ready to be dissolved to have them examined now.

“But if we don’t do it we stand a greater risk of not being able to meet up to the particular requirements for the mutual evaluation, so it is important,” Hon Malone added.

Bills to receive amendments

Among the Bills to receive Amendments, according to Hon Malone, are the BVI Business Companies Act, Financial and Money Services Act, Insurance Act, Company Management Act, Proceeds of Criminal Conduct Act, Elections Act, Anti-Money Laundering Act, Limited Partnership Act, Financial Investigation Agency Act, Security and Business Investment Act.


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