Author: Ashlie Gibson
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29 May 2014


At  the  2012  General  Assembly,  ARAPAC  decided  to  establish  a  Study  Group  on  PAC  Effectiveness  –   the  terms  of  reference  are  at  Annex  A.  This  Study  Group  is  charged  with  considering  how  ARAPAC   members   might   utilize   benchmarks   and   performance   standards   to   increase   effectiveness   and   efficiency  across  the  region.    

The   powers   and   functions   of   legislatures   vary   significantly   and   achieving   consensus   on   what   a   democratic  parliament  actually  is  (or  should  be)  has  proved  difficult.  In  recent  years  a  debate  has   begun   on   the   potential   benefit   of   an   internationally   agreed   system   of   parliamentary   benchmarking.   Benchmarks  and  methods  of  self-­‐assessment  can  help  build  public  confidence  and  strengthen  the   capacity  of  parliaments  to  manage  increasing  demands  as  well  as  assert  greater  institutional  inde-­‐ pendence.  For  donors,  the  use  of  benchmarks  and  standards  can  justify  both  their  expenditure  on   parliamentary   development   and   the   effectiveness   of   these   aid   interventions.   Inter-­‐Parliamentary   Organizations   (IPOs)   can   use   the   assessment   frameworks   as   an   opportunity   to   codify   their   wider   programmes  and  best  practice  guides  and  to  share  experience  of  member  parliaments.      

Several   benchmarks   or   good   practice   guides   have   been   produced   but   the   tools   developed   for   legislatures   to   date   have   different   purposes   and   ask   different   questions.   Some   sets   of   standards   seek   to   codify   good   practice   for   purposes   of   self-­‐assessment   while   others   seek   to   identify   the   minimum   criteria   for   being   a   democratic   parliament.   Both   methods   are   more   at   the   stage   of   assessing  where  a  legislature  is  at  the  moment  (against  international  criteria),  providing  examples   of  issues  to  consider,  and  stimulating  intense  debate  about  what  kind  of  institution  the  organisation   should  become.  Neither  approach  is  designed  to  rank  legislatures  against  others:  the  purpose  is  to   improve  the  functioning  of  that  legislature.      

In   the   end-­‐of-­‐conference   statement   from   the   March   2010   International   Conference   on   Benchmarking   and   Self-­Assessment   for   Democratic   Parliaments,   participants   noted   the   paradox   between   the   triumph   of   democracy   both   as   an   ideal   and   as   a   set   of   political   institutions   and   practices,   and   the   disillusionment   developing   with   the   rules   of   democracy   in   practice.   There   was   also  agreement  that  the  core  values  of  a  democratic  parliament  “is   one   that   is   representative   of   the   political   will   and   social   diversity   of   the   population,   and   is   effective   in   its   legislative,   oversight   and   representational   functions,   at   the   sub-­national,   national   and   international   levels.   Crucially,   it   is   also   transparent,  accessible,  and  accountable  to  the  citizens  that  it  represents.”1    

Assessing   effectiveness   requires   some   form   of   criteria   and   measurement   of   performance.   A   benchmark   is   a   standard   by   which   something   can   be   measured   or   judged.   The   benefit   of   using   benchmarks  to  review  performance  is  that,  if  done  properly,  it  enables  the  institution  to  be  more   aware  of  how  it  can  improve  its  performance.  This  requires  an  honest  and  open  approach  to  new   ideas   as   well   as   the   ability   to   be   self-­‐reflective   and   self-­‐critical:   “institutions  that  are  open  to  change   and  new  ways  of  doing  things  are  healthier  and  more  robust  than  those  that  are  not.  They  also  help  to   ensure  their  own  relevance  and  effectiveness  in  the  long-­term”.2     The  Inter-­‐Parliamentary  Union  (IPU),  UNDP,  Commonwealth  Parliamentary  Association  (CPA),  the   National   Democratic   Institute   for   International   Affairs   (NDI)   and   the   Canadian   Parliamentary   Centre  have  been  at  the  forefront  of  working  with  parliaments  to  produce  assessment  frameworks.   Each   of   these   organisations   have   adopted   different   approaches   to   performance   assessment   but                                                                                                                  

1  Participants’  Statement  at  the  International  Conference  on  Benchmarking  and  Self-­‐Assessment  for  Democratic  Parliaments,  Paris,  

2-­‐4  March  2010.    

2  Duffy,  B  &  Thompson,  M  (2003)  Innovative  committee  methods:  Case  studies  from  two  Parliaments,  Australasian  Study  of  

Parliament  Group  Annual  Conference,  18–19  July  2003,  p.  47  


have   all   approached   the   task   from   the   perspective   of   the   legislature   as   a   whole   rather   than   individual   committees.   Very   little   work   has   so   far   been   carried   out   on   how   to   focus   benchmarks   on   individual   parliamentary   committees   and,   especially,   financial   oversight   committees.   References   to   material  already  available  can  be  found  at  Annex  B.       This   briefing   paper   draws   heavily   on   Commonwealth   good   practice.   It   is   recognised   that   not   all   ARAPAC   members   come   from   this   tradition   but,   given   that   the   Public   Accounts   Committee   (PAC)   system,   which   can   be   found   in   a   number   of   non-­‐Commonwealth   countries   across   Asia,   is   derived   from   Westminster,   it   is   hoped   that   Commonwealth   good   practice   might   inform   the   development   of   benchmarks   appropriate   for   all   ARAPAC   members.   The   Commonwealth   (Latimer   House)   Principles3  govern  issues  such  as  the  harmonious  balancing  of  power  and  the  interaction  between   parliament,   the   Executive   and   the   judiciary   in   democratic   societies.   They   set   out   in   detail   the   consensus  arrived  at  by  representatives  of  the  three  branches  of  government  in  the  Commonwealth   on   how   each   of   their   national   institutions   should   interrelate   in   the   exercise   of   their   institutional   responsibility.   The   Principles   specify   restraint   in   the   exercise   of   power   within   their   respective   constitutional   spheres   so   that   the   legitimate   discharge   of   constitutional   functions   by   other   institutions   is   not   encroached   upon.   The   Commonwealth   Principles   were   finalised   by   Commonwealth   law   ministers   and   endorsed   by   Commonwealth   Heads   of   Government   at   their   summit  in  Abuja,  Nigeria,  in  December  2003.  The  Principles  have  been  distilled  from  the  Latimer   House  Guidelines  on  Parliamentary  Sovereignty  and  Judicial  Independence.  These  were  drawn  up   in   1998   by   four   prominent   Commonwealth   organisations:   the   Commonwealth   Parliamentary   Association,  the  Commonwealth  Legal  Education  Association,  the  Commonwealth  Magistrates'  and   Judges'  Association  and  the  Commonwealth  Lawyers'  Association.         This  report  provides  guidance  on  benchmarks  that  could  be  adopted  by  ARAPAC.    

Suggested  Benchmarks     Recognizing  the  diversity  of  practice  in  ARAPAC  member  countries,  the  Study  Group  recommends   that   possible benchmarks, which are aspirational rather than prescriptive, for a PAC or other parliamentary committee exercising similar ex post oversight functions might be grouped into four broad generic areas: •


Powers, functions and procedures

Accessibility and transparency

Relationships with the Supreme Audit Institution (SAI)

Under each heading, a number of possible benchmarks are set out below together with the rationale for each recommendation.


Global  good  practice  suggests  that  membership  of  committees  should  reflect  the  balance  of  political   parties  in  the  parliament  –  this  principle  is  common  practice  in  many  countries.  There  should  also   be   a   transparent   method   for   selecting   the   chairs   of   committees.   It is   recommended   that   the   assignment   of   committee   members   on   each   committee   shall   include   both   majority   and   minority   party   members   and   reflect   the   political   composition   of   the   legislature   as   far   as   practicable.   It   is                                                                                                                  

3  Commonwealth  (Latimer  House)  Principles.  May  2004  


further   recommended   that   there   should   be   a   transparent   method   for   selecting   or   electing   the   chairs  of  committees.     Committee  members  may  not  always  have  the  in-­‐depth  knowledge  or  expertise  necessary  to  treat   specific  issues  or  complex  legislation.  They  may  therefore  wish  to  consult  or  employ  experts  to  help   them  in  their  work.  Each  committee  should  have  the  legal  mechanisms  and  financial  means  in  place   to   allow   them   to   consult   experts.   In   a   number   of   parliaments,   the   mechanism   to   employ   experts   requires   that   committees   go   through   the   Speaker   to   ensure   fair   and   proper   use   of   financial   resources.     It   is   recommended   that   committees   shall   have   the   right   to   consult   and/or   employ   experts.       Adequate  non-­‐partisan  professional  staff  is  a  prerequisite  for  the  well  functioning  of  any  parliament.   Parliamentarians   may   not   have   the   expertise   in   a   certain   subject   being   examined   in   committee   and   they  do  not  have  the  time  to  do  research  on  all  subjects  on  their  own  –  there  is  a  need  to  support   both   individual   members   and   committees   with   good   quality   and   accessible   research.   It   is   recommended   that   the   legislature   should   have   an   adequate   non-­‐partisan   professional   staff   to   support  its  operations  including  the  operations  of  its  committees.       It  is  the  norm  in  parliaments  today  that  distinctions  are  drawn  between  partisan  and  non-­‐partisan   staff.   If   this   does   not   happen,   parliamentarians,   particularly   those   in   opposition,   may   not   receive   adequate   staff   support.   It   is   critical   to   have   a   neutral   staff   to   perform   administrative   functions,   give   advice  on  procedural  issues,  or  provide  research.  Beyond  the  head  of  the  parliamentary  service  and   his  or  her  staff,  which  should  always  be  non-­‐partisan  it  is  for  a  parliament  to  decide  which  positions   are  partisan  and  which  are  not.  It  is  recommended  that  the  legislature  draws  and  maintains  a  clear   distinction  between  partisan  and  non-­‐partisan  staff.       All   legislatures   need   sufficient   research,   library   and   ICT   facilities   and,   in   some   cases,   parliaments   may  have  agreements  with  outside  organizations  to  use  their  libraries  rather  than  maintaining  an   internal   capacity.   Similarly   parliaments   may   partner   with   think   tanks   and   institutes   for   specialized   research  needs.  It  is  recommended  that  members  and  staff  of  committees  have  access  to  sufficient   research,  library,  and  ICT  facilities.      

Powers,  functions  and  Procedures  

MPs   have   a   heavy   workload   and   must   be   able   to   plan   accordingly,   and   in   advance,   in   order   to   consult   the   public,   and   prepare   for   and   carry   out   their   functions   efficiently   and   effectively.   It   is   recommended   that   adequate   advance   notice   of   meetings   and   the   agenda   for   the   meeting   be   provided.         The   Commonwealth   (Latimer   House)   Principles   state   that   parliaments   should   have:   ‘a   committee   structure   appropriate   to   the   size   of   parliament,   adequately   resourced   and   with   the   power   to   summon   witnesses,   including   ministers.   Governments   should   be   required   to   announce   publicly,   within   a   defined   time   period,   their   responses   to   committee   reports’.4  It   is   recommended   that   committees   shall   have   the   power   to   summon   persons,   papers   and   records,   and   this   power   shall   extend  to  witnesses  and  evidence  from  the  Executive  branch,  including  officials  and  ministers.5     While   a   committee   may   decide   to   invite   other   MPs   to   participate   in   its   discussion   or   evidence   sessions,   this   should   not   extend   to   participation   in   any   votes   or   decision-­‐making   processes.   This   benchmark   is   seen   as   an   agreed   Commonwealth   and   international   norm   for   all   democratic   legislatures   as,   should   non-­‐committee   members   be   able   to   vote,   a   majority   party   in   parliament                                                                                                                   4  Commonwealth  (Latimer  House)  Principles.  May  2004.  See  Annex,  Art.  VI,  2,  a  (i)      

5  Within  the  Westminster  system,  it  is  conventional  that  parliament  will  usually  summon  Accounting  Officers  directly  

rather  than  through  a  Minister.    


could  swamp  a  committee  at  the  time  of  the  vote  and  thus  undermine  the  work  of  the  committee.  It   is   recommended   that   only   MPs   appointed   to   the   committee   should   have   the   right   to   vote   in   the   committee.       Oversight   of   the   Executive   is   one   of   the   core   functions   of   the   legislature.   As   set   out   above,   all   committees   should   ‘include   both   majority   and   minority   party   members   and   reflect   the   political   composition  of  the  legislature  as  far  as  practicable.’  It  is  recommended  that  the  committees  shall   provide   meaningful   opportunities   for   opposition   parties   to   engage   in   effective   oversight   of   government  expenditures.       A   legislature   cannot   effectively   oversee   the   Executive   if   it   is   denied   access   to   the   necessary   information  held  by  the  Executive.  The  Commonwealth  (Latimer  House)  Principles  state  that:  ‘(i)  a   committee  structure  appropriate  to  the  size  of  parliament,  adequately  resourced  and  with  the  power   to   summon   witnesses,   including   ministers.   Governments   should   be   required   to   announce   publicly,   within  a  defined  time  period,  their  responses  to  committee  reports;  (ii)  standing  orders  should  provide   appropriate  opportunities  for  members  to  question  ministers  and  full  debate  on  legislative  proposals.’6   It   is   recommended   that   the   committees   shall   have   access   to   records   of   Executive   branch   accounts   and  related  documentation  sufficient  to  be  able  to  meaningfully  review  the  accuracy  of  Executive   branch  reporting  on  its  revenues  and  expenditures.       Committee   hearings   should   be   held   in   public   with   any   exceptions   being   clearly   defined   and   provided   for   in   the   Rules   of   Procedure   although   it   is   usual   that   administrative   and   deliberative   meetings   of   committees   will   be   held   in   private.   Committees   may   also   meet   in   private   when   reviewing  sensitive  material  related  to  national  security,  or  at  the  request  of  a  witness,  or  for  the   protection   of   a   witness,   when   hearing   evidence   on   sensitive   matters.   It   is   recommended   that   committee   hearings   be   held   in   public.   It   is   critical   to   the   transparency   of   the   parliament   that,   while   voting  in  a  committee  will  take  place  in  a  closed  session  of  the  committee,  the  results  of  the  votes,   or  the  records  of  the  proceedings,  should  be  public.  It  is  recommended  that  the  record  of  votes  of  a   committee  shall  be  in  public.       Witnesses,   including   whistleblowers,   should   be   able   to   report   instances   of   corruption   or   other   wrongdoing   without   fear   of   reprisal.   It   is   recommended   that   the   legislature   shall   protect   informants  and  witnesses  presenting  relevant  information  to  committee  inquiries  about  corruption   or   other   unlawful   activity.   Furthermore,   witnesses   should   have   the   protection   of   parliamentary   privilege  to  ensure  they  are  able  to  give  information  to  the  committee  without  fear  of  legal  action.    

Accessibility  and  Transparency  

Article   VIII   of   the   Commonwealth   Principles   seeks   to   ensure   broader   public   participation   in   the   legislative   process   –   this   is   especially   true   for   committees.   In   addition   to   individual   citizens,   the   Commonwealth   Principles   also   promote   broader   participation   of   civil   society.   Participation   is   essential   for   good   governance   as   it   improves   information   flow,   accountability,   due   process,   and   gives  voice  to  those  most  directly  affected  by  public  policy.  The  Constitution  of  South  Africa  states   that   ‘The  National  Assembly  must  facilitate  public  involvement  in  the  legislative  and  other  processes  of   the   Assembly   and   its   committees’.   In   Canada,   the   Estimates   Committee   of   the   House   of   Commons   annually  conducts  cross-­‐country  consultations  on  the  federal  budget.  In  New  Zealand,  committees   in   the   House   of   Representatives   hold   public   hearings   when   examining   draft   legislation   and   attempt   to   hear   all   members   of   the   public   who   wish   to   appear   before   them.   It   is   recommended   that   opportunities  should  be  given  for  public  input  into  committee  inquiries.       Information  must  be  given  in  a  timely  manner  so  that  the  public  can  participate  effectively  in  the                                                                                                                  

6  Commonwealth  (Latimer  House)  Principles.  May  2004.  See  Annex  Art.  VI,  2,  a  (i)  and  (ii)      


legislative   process   -­‐   both   the   government   and   the   committee   may   choose   to   provide   this   information.  Citizens  and  civil  society  groups  should  have  adequate  time  to  review  the  information,   respond   and   have   their   views   heard   and   considered   by   the   committee.   It   is   recommended   that   information   is   provided   to   the   public   in   a   timely   manner   regarding   matters   under   consideration   by   the  legislature.       When   considering   public   access   to   committees,   it   is   important   to   underline   the   responsibility   of   MPs   to   reach   out   to   their   constituents   and   educate   the   public   and   the   media   on   the   work   of   the   committees.  Only  an  educated  public  can  truly  profit  from  access  to  the  legislature.  Such  outreach   would   also   encourage   the   two-­‐way   flow   of   information   between   MPs   and   constituents,   and   promote   greater   understanding   of   the   work   in   the   committees,   which   may   in   turn   promote   greater   public  confidence  in  the  legislature  as  a  whole.  It  is  recommended  that  the  committees  promote   the  public’s  understanding  of  their  work.     The  Commonwealth  (Latimer  House)  Principles  state  that  ‘Conflict  of  interest  guidelines  and  codes  of   conduct   shall   require   full   disclosure   by   ministers   and   members   of   their   financial   and   business   interest’.7  For  such  disclosure  to  be  effective,  it  must  be  public.  It  is  recommended  that  committee   members   should   be   required   to   disclose   relevant   business   interests   if   there   is   potential   for   a   perceived  conflict  of  interest.       Many   parliaments   today   have   a   non-­‐partisan   media   relations   office   or   staff   tasked   with   communicating   with   the   media.   A   media   relations   facility   serves   both   as   a   liaison   for   media   reporting   on   parliament’s   activities,   and   as   a   resource   for   parliament   when   seeking   to   provide   information  to  the  public.  Committees  may  need  to  develop  media  strategies  for  reaching  out  to  the   public  when  holding  public  hearings  or  inquiries.  It  is  important  to  underline  the  value  of  having  a   non-­‐partisan   media   relations   facility   in   order   to   ensure   fair   coverage   and   access.   It   is   recommended  that  the  legislature  should  have  a  non-­‐partisan  media  relations  facility.       The   activities   of   PAC’s   are   aimed   at   achieving   improved   financial   management   practices   and   accountability  within  the  public  sector  and  public  funded  institutions  in  the  implementation  of  the   budget.   They   need   to   have   a   framework   according   to   which   they   can   plan,   monitor   implementation   and   assess   and   report   on   their   performance.   An   effective   performance   measurement   system   (PMS)   should   specify   the   committee’s   goals,   objectives,   inputs,   resources,   activities,   processes,   outputs,   performance   indicators   and   outcomes.   Each   committee   should   assess   its   performance   at   least   once   every   year   in   a   manner   that   is   consistent   with   its   aspirations   for   performance   effectiveness.   It   is   recommended   that   the   committees   have   a   performance   measurement   system   to   assess   their   effectiveness  and  performance.    

Relationships  with  the  SAI  

In  many  countries,  the  reports  of  the  Supreme  Audit  Institution  (SAI)  are  tabled  late  thus  making   effective   oversight   impossible.   Ideally,   the   financial   audit   report   should   be   tabled   within   three   months   of   the   end   of   the   fiscal   year.   It   is   critical   that   the   SAI’s   independence   be   protected,   and   that   its  reports  be  tabled  expeditiously  in  the  legislature.  It  is  recommended  that  SAI  reports  be  tabled   in  the  legislature  in  a  direct  and  timely  manner.       It   is   often   observed   that   lack   of   resources   is   a   common   complaint   and   cause   of   delays   in   the   SAI   producing   reports.   The   committee   should   ensure   that   audits   are   conducted,   and   the   reports   tabled,   in  a  timely  manner  and  that  the  SAI  is  provided  with  sufficient  resources  to  accomplish  this.  This   view   is   reinforced   in   the   recommendations   of   a   CPA   Workshop   on   Parliamentary   Oversight   of   Finance  and  Budgetary  Process  which  concluded  that,  ‘It is important that Auditors-General should                                                                                                                

7  Commonwealth  (Latimer  House)  Principles.  May  2004.  See  Annex  Art.  V  (2a).      


submit audit reports in a timely fashion but without compromising either the content or quality of these whether they relate to annual or special reports’.8  It  is  recommended  that  the  PAC  ensure   that  the  SAI  shall  be  provided  with  adequate  resources  and  legal  authority  to  conduct  audits  in  a   timely  manner.       While   a   committee’s   recommendations   are   not   binding,   it   is   expected   that   the   Executive   will   implement   them.   In   most   countries,   the   Executive   is   obliged   to   provide   a   formal   response   to   a   committee’s   recommendations   within   a   specified   period.   Follow-­‐up   on   PAC   recommendations   is   critical   to   achieve   improved   financial   management   and   control   within   the   public   sector   and   public-­‐ funded   institutions.   It   is   essential   that   the   committee   has   a   formal   follow-­‐up   procedure   to   determine   and   monitor   action   taken   by   government   on   the   PAC’s   recommendations.   It   is   recommended   that   the   committee   has   a   formal   procedure   for   following   up   on   its   recommendations.    

Recommended  Benchmarks   1.

2.   3.   4.   5.   6.   7.   8.   9.   10.   11.   12.   13.  

  The   assignment   of   committee   members   on   each   committee   includes   both   majority   and   minority   party   members   and   reflects   the   political   composition   of   the   legislature   as   far   as   practicable.       There  is  a  transparent  method  for  selecting  or  electing  the  chairs  of  committees.   Committees  have  the  right  to  consult  and/or  employ  experts.     The  legislature  has  an  adequate  non-­‐partisan  professional  staff  to  support  the  operations  of   its  committees.     The   legislature   draws   and   maintains   a   clear   distinction   between   partisan   and   non-­‐partisan   staff.     Members  and  staff  of  committees  have  access  to  sufficient  research,  library,  and  ICT  facilities.     Adequate  advance  notice  of  meetings  and  the  agenda  for  the  meeting  is  provided.   Committees   have   the   power   to   summon   persons,   papers   and   records,   and   this   power   extends   to  witnesses  and  evidence  from  the  Executive  branch,  including  officials.   Only  MPs  appointed  to  a  committee  have  the  right  to  vote  in  the  committee.     The   committees   provide   meaningful   opportunities   for   opposition   parties   to   engage   in   effective  oversight  of  government  expenditures.     Committees  have  access  to  records  of  Executive  branch  accounts  and  related  documentation   sufficient  to  be  able  to  meaningfully  review  the  accuracy  of  Executive  branch  reporting  on  its   revenues  and  expenditures.     Committee  hearings  are  held  in  public.     The  record  of  votes  of  a  committee  is  public.    


8  CPA  Workshop  on  Parliamentary  Oversight  of  Finance  and  Budgetary  Process,  Nairobi  Kenya,  10-­‐14  December  2001  


14. 15. 16.   17.   18.   19.   20.   21.   22.   23.  

The   legislature   protects   informants   and   witnesses   presenting   relevant   information   to   committee  inquiries  about  corruption  or  other  unlawful  activity.     Opportunities  are  given  for  public  input  into  committee  inquiries.       Information   is   provided   to   the   public   in   a   timely   manner   regarding   matters   under   consideration  by  the  legislature.     Committees  promote  the  public’s  understanding  of  their  work.     Committee  members  are  required  to  disclose  relevant  business  interests  if  there  is  potential   for  a  perceived  conflict  of  interest.     The  legislature  has  a  non-­‐partisan  media  relations  facility.     Committees   have   performance   measurement   systems   to   assess   their   effectiveness   and   performance.   SAI  reports  are  tabled  in  the  legislature  in  a  timely  manner.     The   SAI   is   provided   with   adequate   resources   and   legal   authority   to   conduct   audits   in   a   timely   manner.   Committees  have  formal  procedures  for  following  up  on  their  recommendations.  



Annex  A:  STUDY  GROUP  TERMS  OF  REFERENCE   The objectives of this study are to: •

Identify possible Effectiveness Measurements for PAC, which could become the basis for improving ARAPAC members’ performance in PACs;

Undertake a review of Effectiveness Measurements in the ARAPAC region and tabulate by ARAPAC members;

Prepare a report for this study of Best Practice Standards for PAC Effectiveness Measurements by analyzing what measures there are globally;

Once steps above are documented, draw conclusions on what might be Benchmarks and Performance Standards for ARAPAC countries to follow, and identify the steps each ARAPAC member would have to take to meet those standards; and

Prepare a report - with recommendations for action - for the next ARAPAC meeting to be discussed by members as a basis for improving PAC practices and standards in PAC Effectiveness Measurements in the ARAPAC region.



Annex  B:  A  Compendium  of  Parliamentary  Benchmarks   Canadian  Comprehensive  Auditing  Foundation   Parliamentary  Oversight  –  Committees  and  Relationships,  2010     Canadian  Parliamentary  Centre   African  Parliamentary  Index     Commonwealth  Parliamentary  Association   Recommended  Benchmarks  for  Democratic  Legislatures,  2006   Recommended   Benchmarks   for   Asia,   India   and   South-­‐East   Asia   Regions’   Democratic   Legislatures,   2010     European  Commission   Engaging  and  Supporting  Parliaments  Worldwide     European  Parliament   Benchmarking  for  Parliaments     International  IDEA   Assessing  the  Quality  of  Democracy:  A  Practical  Guide     Inter-­Parliamentary  Union   Parliament  and  Democracy  in  the  Twenty-­‐First  Century:  A  Guide  to  Good  Practice,  2006     National  Democratic  Institute  for  International  Affairs   Toward  the  Development  of  International  Standards  for  Democratic  Legislatures,  2007     Southern  Africa  Development  Community  Organisation  of  PACs   Good  Practice  Guide  for  Public  Accounts  Committees  in  SADC,  2009     UNDP   Benchmarking  and  Self-­‐assessment  for  Democratic  Legislatures,  2010