Premier. Hon Dalton Tagelagi announced his government’s project – Niue Ko Kaina saying that this plan aims to provide a framework to enhance Niue by developing and improving Niue’s natural physical spaces.
“This new strategy is for all of Niue – Government, businesses, individuals, and communities – because when our people achieve their goals, we achieve ours,” according to Premier Tagelagi.
“This new initiative will focus on further enhancing our current build environment and take a closer look at our current situation and develop and restore our build environment to complement our natural surroundings and should function to serve our needs,” says Hon. Tagelagi.
BCN news understands that most of the members of the Assembly attended the consultations which provided them the opportunity to express their views and ask questions outside of the standard 6-weekly intervals of the Fono Ekepule sittings.
However, one veteran politician and former Minister O’love Jacobsen said that she struggled to see the clarity of the intentions of these new consultations being ushered in.
She said, “As members of the Assembly, we are mindful that there is already a model of practice since 1974 or our terms of reference as prescribed in the supreme law of the country, the constitution”.
“And as members, we must also be mindful not to go outside these legal parameters in the execution of our duties as the representatives of the people,” said Hon. Jacobsen.
The consultation also provided the opportunity for the Fono Ekepule to learn about the new organisational structure where the Legislative arm of government is separate from the executive.
There are also two new positions created for the Legislature, one is the Advisor to the Speaker Christine Ioane and the other is the former Deputy Clerk Tina Tavita now appointed as Hansard Officer.
Jacobsen said that from time to time she must speak up and ask questions about some of the decisions made by the government that requires parliamentary scrutiny such as these new initiatives and appointments.
The veteran common roll member told BCN News that she was looking for more clarity on the organisational structure of the Legislature and wanted to know what benefits these new initiatives will provide to make their work easier.
“I wanted to know that if I need to put forward a private members bill that there are people in these positions who will be able to help me”, said Hon. Jacobsen.
O’love Jacobsen said that she was also able to raise her concerns about the land lease issues concerning the location of the new parliament building at Halamahaga and other issues.
Hon. Jacobsen felt that the consultation should have been recorded and broadcast via radio so that the people can hear what their representatives are talking about.
The members of the Fono Ekepule heard presentations from the Premier, the Speaker, the Solicitor General Justin Kamupala, Public Service Commissioner Ida Talagi-Hekesi, staff of the Legislature and other public servants.