Eesti 200's plan for incoming ministers to be cross-examined put on hold

Incoming Minister of Education Kristina Kallas (Eesti 200).
Incoming Minister of Education Kristina Kallas (Eesti 200). Source: Raigo Pajula/Office of the President

Cross-examining ministers in front of the Riigikogu before they can take office, would require an amendment to the Riigikogu Rules of Procedure and Internal Rules Act. As the amendment needs to be made by the Riigikogu itself, cross-examinations cannot be conducted on those ministers, who are set to start their new roles next week, said Eesti 200 vice-chair and incoming Minister of Education Kristina Kallas.

At the start of March, in the days following the Riigikogu elections, incoming Minister of Education Kristina Kallas (Eesti 200) said, that Eesti 200 wanted to see state reforms, which would strengthen the role of the Riigikogu. Kallas suggested that future ministers should be cross-examined by the Riigikogu before they take office.

Kallas added, that future members of the government should also have to prove their competence to the Riigikogu. This way, no one could be appointed to a government role, whom neither the public nor the Riigikogu had no prior knowledge about.

On Friday, Kallas told ERR that Eesti 200 had discussed the issue at length with the other coalition partners. "The problem there is that the Riigikogu's current rules of procedure do not allow any of these things to be done. It is not possible to set up these cross-examinations for (members of) the new incoming government," Kallas said.

"And because of that, it was agreed that we need to make a fundamental change to the Riigikogu's rules of procedure. One of the things is this cross-examination of ministers. Another is to introduce a format for debates in the Riigikogu, which currently does not exist. And to do that, we need to change the law, but it can be changed in parliament," Kallas added.

According to Kallas, for that reason, the coalition agreement only included a rather general sentence referring to changing the working culture of the Riigikogu.


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Editor: Michael Cole

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