The Government called for an extended sitting of the House to consider six Bills, but showed exactly how shambolic it is when a Minister failed to be present in the House as required to begin a debate on the next Bill on the Order Paper, Shadow Leader of the House Gerry Brownlee says.
“Today’s performance in the House borders on farcical.
“The Speaker was left with no choice but to end the extended sitting an hour and 45 minutes early meaning next to no progress was made on the Government’s legislative programme.
“Meanwhile, because the Government imposed extended sitting hours without agreement from the Business Committee a whole morning of select committee hearings was lost.
“This means Bills which could have had their first reading and be sent off to select committee for scrutiny this morning will now languish on the Order Paper for an unknown period of time. The machinery of government is being ground to a halt by a Government which can’t get the basics right.
“Leader of the House Chris Hipkins will have ministerial colleagues asking for a please explain.
“The Government needs to get its act together. More people will begin to think ‘if it can’t even run Parliament how can it run the country’.”