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Wednesday 28 September 2022 | Written by Caleb Fotheringham | Published in National
Parliament staff stand in the new committee room holding up a photograph of Queen Elizabeth, the room will be called the Queen Elizabeth Gallery. 22092707
There are currently six standing committees but new
committees are set to be formed when Parliament begins.
Parliamentary committees are a group of MPs who
work together to investigate matters of national interest on behalf of
Clerk of Parliament Tangata
Vainerere said the room will be named the Queen Elizabeth Gallery, in honour of
Queen Elizabeth II, who passed away earlier this month.
The room is painted white with gold around the edges
of the windowsills to keep in line with the royal theme. Book shelves line the back
wall with books on Cook Islands law and society.
“All the committee meetings and special meetings
will be held in here,” Vainerere said.
“It’s a room for a purpose.
“We didn’t have a committee room before, now we
The room is also set up to host online meetings, if
committee members cannot make it in person.
Vainerere said committee meetings used
to be held in Parliament’s chambers.
He also said the public were not allowed to loan the books but were welcome to
browse and take photos of information they wanted.
A new wall was put in as part of the renovations that
extended the room size from six by three metres to six by six metres.
Vainerere previously told Cook Islands
News constructing a committee meeting room was something that should have been
done “ages ago”.
Vainerere said the new Standing Orders passed in
July this year would increase Parliament’s service requirements.
The new Standing Orders will also allow Members of
Parliament to appear virtually and could result in 45 more sitting days a year.
Parliament in the past only sat for around 15-20 days annually.