by Linda Straker
- Government proposed constituency provision of $120,000 per year to each elected Member of Parliament
- Documents approved by both Houses published in 22 December 2023 Government Gazette
- Leader of Government Business and Permanent Secretary in Ministry of Finance emailed seeking clarity
Opposition Leader Dr Keith Mitchell and other members of the elected Opposition in the Lower House of Parliament said they are yet to be provided with information about how to access the EC$10,000 that is assigned per constituency in the 2024 budget.
“I have heard nothing or received any instructions from the Parliament or any other government department or agency about this fund, no one has contacted me,” said Dr Mitchell.
Finance Minister Dennis Cornwall told the House during the 2024 budget statement, that Government shall propose a constituency provision of $120,000 per year to each elected Member of Parliament — irrespective of whether you are a member of the Government or the Opposition.
All relevant parliamentary documents as it pertains to the 2024 Estimate of Revenue and Expenditure were approved by the Members of Parliament of the Lower and Upper Houses and published in the 22 December 2023 Government Gazette.
“For such funding, there must be some level of accountability, what are the mechanisms for accountability? Are members of Parliament getting the money directly into their accounts; do they have to show receipt of spending? What is the role of Parliament in all of this? I need clarity about this constituency provision,” said Dr Mitchell.
In September 2022, Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell, the elected Member of Parliament in the Lower House for the constituency of St David, said he wants members to start receiving financial allocations from the state so that they will be able to serve their constituents properly and effectively. “This system that we have where Members of Parliament are given no resources whatsoever to address the concerns of their constituents is not going to lead to effective representation in Grenada,” he said, speaking on the adjournment at the 29 September sitting of the Lower House.
An email has been sent to Philip Telesford, Leader of Government Business in the Lower House, and Mike Sylvester Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance seeking clarity about the format for accessing the monthly provision.