ICAC bill finally tabled

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The Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) Bill has finally been tabled in Parliament and immediately referred to a parliamentary committee to conduct consultations on it.
The bill which was tabled by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Justice and Attorney-General Davis Steven then went through the first reading before it was referred to the Permanent Parliamentary Committee on Constitutional Laws and Acts and Subordinate Legislations.
Acting Clerk of Parliament Kala Aufa told The National that it was the normal process for the ICAC Bill to be referred to that committee currently headed by Rabaul MP Dr Allan Marat.
But he will have to be replaced because he has now become the deputy Opposition Leader.
Aufa said a new chairman will be appointed this week.
The other members of the committee are Rai Coast MP Peter Sapia (deputy chairman), Morobe Governor Ginson Saonu, Enga Governor Sir Peter Ipatas, Hela Governor Philip Undialu and Southern Highlands Governor William Powi.
Aufa said the committee could take up to two months to deliberate on the legislation.
“The bill now has been presented, gazetted and referred to the committee so the process has started.
“The committee will be required to carry out consultation and is expected to report back to parliament.
“When the committee reports back, that’s called the first required opportunity for debate.”
Aufa said Steven would then make a statement on the proposed law in the House.
“After that, it goes through the second reading. By law the bill must stand referred for another two months.
“This is the time that the MPs are required to seek the views of their people in their electorate. There will be another opportunity for debate.”
During voting, at least 74 MPs must vote for the bill to be passed.

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