Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2001-11-12-Speech-1-071"
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". Mr President, until this current parliamentary term, the standing committees, the interparliamentary delegations and the delegations of the joint parliamentary committees of this House were set up using a uniform procedure: Plenary, at the proposal of the Conference of Presidents, appointed Members, and these, at the inaugural meeting, elected the bureau for each of these bodies. The reform of the rules introduced as a result of the decision made by this House in plenary at the end of the last parliamentary term changed this situation with regard to the interparliamentary delegations and the delegations in joint parliamentary committees. From that point on, both were elected and set up in a different way from the standing committees: their bureaux were approved by this House, at the proposal of the Conference of Presidents, which appointed the remainder of its Members. Proceeding in this fashion, at the start of this fifth parliamentary term, it was noticed that there was a contradiction in Rule 170. This Rule stated that the delegations of joint parliamentary committees would be set up in the same way as the standing committees, and, at the same time, it was stated that this would be carried out in accordance with Rule 168, that had already been amended in the way I previously mentioned. This gave rise to a contradiction, no doubt caused by an error in this House, which had adopted an oral amendment by simple majority without having removed the reference to the former procedures from the text of the Rules of Procedure. In order to resolve this contradiction, the Conference of Presidents asked the Committee on Constitutional Affairs to look into the matter. The report we are debating today is the result of the work carried out by this committee. It approved this report exactly one year ago, almost unanimously. I would point out that, for one year, this text has been ‘sleeping the sleep of the just’. The reasons for this escape me. In any case it is clear that, during this time, the chairman of the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, Mr Napolitano, and several coordinators, insisted that it should be included on the agenda of this plenary sitting. I have the report right here. The most important thing is that during this period there was time to be able to reflect upon the following: in the first instance, we have to remove the current contradiction in the Rules of Procedure; this is absolutely crucial if we want to prevent the same doubts we had in July 1999 arising next January. At the same time, the Committee on Constitutional Affairs proposed in its report to return to a uniform procedure with regard to the standing committees, the interparliamentary delegations and the delegations of joint parliamentary committees. It seems that this time used in ‘sleeping the sleep of the just’ with regard to this report has been of use for the parliamentary groups to consider that, although it is absolutely necessary to amend the Rules of Procedure to remove this contradiction in Rule 170, doubts still remain about the need to once again standardise the constitutional procedures of the three bodies in this Parliament that I mentioned at the start of my speech. I am clear on several points: when dealing with a reform of the Rules of Procedure, two principles should be given priority; firstly, consensus and secondly, efficiency. And, whilst we are talking about consensus, it is clear that your rapporteur understands the opinion of the political groups and, therefore, considers that tomorrow we should proceed to remove this contradiction in Rule 170 and leave the procedure for the setting up of interparliamentary delegations and the delegations of joint parliamentary committees as it stands at present. The second issue is efficiency. In January we will, once again, have to deal with a new process for setting up these bodies. This should take place quickly, so that they can continue to function as well as they have up until now. Whilst we are on this subject, I would also like to congratulate, personally, and on behalf of the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, these interparliamentary delegations and the delegations of joint parliamentary committees. I would like, if you will allow me, on behalf of the Committee on Constitutional Affairs and its representatives, to insist on a third principle, coherence, which is also always of fundamental importance. Lastly, Mr President, I would like to remind you of that old proverb which says: ‘a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush’. Let us resolve this contradiction, which is the most important thing for us to do today."@en1
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