Parliamentary commissions should be powerful debate platforms, Deputy Chairman of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of Belarus Valery Mitskevich said at a seminar to discuss law-making at the Belarusian parliament on 23 January, BelTA has learned.
The vice speaker urged MPs to stay in touch with reality and to turn laws into efficient instruments of addressing people's issues. “In this regard, MPs should collaborate with other government agencies and be involved in the legislative process from the very beginning. The parliamentary commissions should be powerful discussion platforms,” he said.
Valery Mitskevich believes that parliamentary hearings, public debate and information exchange with Belarusian and foreign experts should be an important part of the legislative process. “We should be at the cutting edge of all information flows. The legislative process should be as open as possible. This can be achieved through the exchange of views in social media and on personal websites of MPs,” Valery Mitskevich believes.
“This way the public will see the parliament's work not only in the Oval Hall, but also in standing commissions, working groups, during other events where laws are discussed, scrutinized and finalized. Feedback is also important, because it will help MPs see the result of their work,” he added.
MPs should analyze and take into account appeals and requests of individuals and legal entities, as well as the issues people raise during meetings with officials, the vice speaker said.
The seminar on 23 January discussed key issues of the legislative process. It was noted that after gaining independence Belarus has developed a high-quality legal framework for drafting laws. The National Assembly has already passed over 2,500 laws covering a broad range of matters, from economy and social care to defense and law enforcement. This became possible due to the teamwork of all branches of power and collaboration of the two chambers of the parliament, as well as active involvement of the civil society, Valery Mitskevich concluded.