The Office of the Parliamentary Counsel (OPC) is looking to make the process of drafting laws faster and more efficient by connecting ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to the Legislation Production Management System (LPMS).
The LPMS is an electronic platform that manages the life cycle of legislative documents, from drafting to publishing.
By linking MDAs involved in the development of legislation to the system, they will be better able to view and track the status of the proposed legislation, thereby eliminating the process of sending printed copies to the various entities involved, and resulting in a speedier legislative process.
“The plan is to roll out the system as a platform where each ministry will be able to provide us with [drafting] instructions using the system,” said Chief Parliamentary Counsel, Judith Grant, while addressing a recent Think Tank.
“We would receive it and prepare a draft and also upload the draft to the system. Each Ministry would be able to access their drafts that way and to circulate, upload comments and feedback and give further drafting instructions,” she added.
She said that each iteration of the draft and all the feedback would be available on the platform.
“So it’s really a key tool to coordinate the process, and it’s expected to increase efficiencies, because everything will happen in a shorter time. We would also have the benefit of, in real time, being able to see where each piece of legislation is at and be able to review and peruse comments and the drafts themselves,” Ms. Grant noted.
She told JIS News that the LPMS provides an additional benefit of holding the history of how legislation is shaped through the changes made.
“A version of each draft as it goes through the various iterations would be available and preserved on the platform, so that we can really track the history of the matter,” she pointed out.
The OPC is responsible for drafting legislation based on instructions received from client ministries.
“The whole process is really a collaborative one, which would involve input from the responsible ministry itself as well as the various different departments in government that might have an interest or might have the responsibility to advise on legislation, for example, the Attorney General’s Chambers or the Legal Reform Department,” Ms. Grant explained.