I am concerned at the perception that government’s focus on its policy priorities has led it to lose sight at the importance of process.
That was the response from Chief Minister Allan Bell after the Public Accounts Committee reported financial regulations had not been followed over the second phase of the review into the National Insurance Fund.
Mr Bell said: ‘I am concerned at the perception that government’s focus on its policy priorities has led it to lose sight of the importance of process, and I think we should reflect on that.
‘Government is indeed determined to get things done, and to deliver its Agenda for Change, but of course there must also be confidence that the proper procedures are being followed.
‘As Chief Minister I take a serious view of this issue. The report from the Public Accounts Committee will be given careful examination so that government can provide a full and considered response to Tynwald in due course.’
The report by the PAC, chaired by Michael MHK Alfred Cannan, concluded that government had the legal authority for the £770,000 expenditure without reference to Tynwald, but that it should have been put to members given the ‘scale and significance of the review’.
The Chief Minister said: ‘The report when you strip away the rhetoric exonerates the Ministers.
‘They didn’t need to come to Tynwald to get approval for their actions. The only question that comes out of this is whether financial regulations were adhered to.
‘We will be reviewing whether there is a need for changes.’
The report is due to be laid before Tynwald at this month’s sitting but not debated by members until a sitting in the autumn.