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MPs Should Be Given Veto on Key Posts

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TEHRAN, March 8 (ICANA) – A leading British think tank has called for extension of parliamentary powers so that MPs will have the 'final say' on key public post appointments like that of the BBC chairman.
Tuesday, March 08, 2011 9:48:57 AM
MPs Should Be Given Veto on Key Posts

The Institute for Government said MPs should be granted the power to stop any appointments or dismissals of the heads of 25 major economic and utility regulators, public service inspectorates and constitutional watchdogs.

The institute said in its report that the current system of “pre-appointment hearings” conducted by parliament select committees should be “strengthened” so that they can veto the appointments or dismissals rather than serving as just a formal verification to decisions already taken.

Indeed, the MPs have only twice opposed the government on its proposed appointments -- for the Children's Commissioner in 2009 and for an MPC member in 2000, but they have not succeeded in persuading the government to change its decision and the appointments have taken place regardless.

"The credibility and authority of people in top public sector posts such as the Governor of the Bank of England, the Information Commissioner and the Chief Inspector of Schools rest upon their independence from ministerial control, so it is quite right that parliament should have the final say over their appointment and dismissal,” said Lord Adonis, director of the Institute for Government.

"In a parliamentary democracy, effective parliamentary scrutiny and accountability are vital to the legitimacy of government. Our proposals build on existing good practice and serve to enhance that legitimacy," he added.

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