Multiple agencies under PMO: Law amendment on anvilThe government has initiated the process to amend laws for bringing a number of government agencies under the Prime Minister’s Office.
The government has initiated the process to amend laws for bringing a number of government agencies under the Prime Minister’s Office.
On February 23, the government brought the National Investigation Department (NID), the Department of Revenue Investigation (DRI) and the Department of Money Laundering Investigation (DMLI) under the PMO by amending the Nepal Government Business Rules.
But they are yet to come under the PMO in practice as laws make them answerable to other ministries. For instance, the NID is answerable to the Home Ministry and other two departments report to the Finance Ministry.
“Homework is being done to bring them under the PMO by amending related laws,” said PMO Secretary Khaga Raj Baral.
According to the Law Ministry, it is working on amending a number of laws through Nepal Act Amendment Procedure that need minor adjustments in line with the federal set-up and new government decisions.
“We have sent letters to various ministries to provide us with the draft of amendments to be made to the existing laws,” said Hum Bahadur KC, assistant spokesperson at the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs.
As the law is yet to be amended, these offices have been reporting to both the PMO and the line ministry.
Officials said these bodies dealing with national security and financial and economic crimes were brought under the PMO to strengthen them. Clause 2 of the new business rules says the PMO generally directs, controls and conducts Nepal’s governance system. This clause is a new addition. In the past, the PMO only took updates and monitored the issues.
Since DMLI and DRI are two important departments, the PMO is mulling over assigning one secretary to oversee them. According to PMO officials, these departments were brought under the PMO to avoid conflicts of interest and for better coordination across the government agencies.
After realisation that the prime minister was not timely and adequately informed about national security issues, the NID was brought under the PMO. “This is also the international practice,” said Baral.