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Committee calls for joined-up working and scrutiny in report on Programme for Government

The Committee for the Executive Office yesterday called for a joined-up approach to ongoing scrutiny and monitoring of Government delivery in its report on the draft Programme for Government 2016-21.

The recommendation is one of several contained in the Committee's report on the PfG published yesterday. The Committee heard that the outcomes-based accountability approach means that no outcome can be delivered by a single Executive Department, emphasising the need for interdepartmental co-operation at Executive level as well as a joined-up approach to scrutiny by the Assembly and its Committees.

Before embarking on its scrutiny of the PfG, the Committee heard evidence on the Executive's new outcomes-based accountability (OBA) approach from Mark Friedman, Director of the Fiscal Policies Institute at Santa Fe, who is renowned for his international work on OBA, a framework for turning data into action.

Committee Chairperson Mike Nesbitt MLA said "It is clear to the Committee that there is significant support for the outcomes-based approach adopted for this Programme for Government. This represents a challenge not only for Executive departments, but also for local government, the community and voluntary sector and the private sector to deliver for all citizens in Northern Ireland. The Committee for the Executive Office and all other statutory Assembly committees also have important parts to play in not only scrutinising the Executive, but actively contributing to the continuous improvement process."

Deputy Chairperson Danny Kennedy MLA added "This is the second phase of the Executive's consultation on the Programme for Government and follows the earlier consultation on the draft Framework, which the Committee heard attracted a record number of responses. The current consultation closes on 23 December and the Committee would encourage everyone to take the opportunity to make their views known to the Executive."


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