The UK Parliament will resume its activity on April 21, following the Easter recess, with “technological solutions” that allow it’s remote operation.
The Leader of the House of Commons, Jacob Rees-Mogg made the announcement at the weekend.
The announcement comes after the new leader of the Labour opposition party, Sir Keir Starmer, called for the urgent reopening of the house in order to debate the government’s management of the coronavirus pandemic.
MPs approved the Easter adjournment timings on March 25, minutes before the chamber rose, at a time when the increasing impact of Covid-19 was clear.
The motion was unopposed although several concerns were raised by opposition parties about their inability to scrutinise major decisions during this four-week period.
A spokesman for Commons Leader Mr Rees-Mogg said: “Parliament will return on April 21 to fulfil its essential constitutional functions of conducting scrutiny, authorising spending and making laws.
“In these unprecedented times, technological solutions have already been implemented for select committees and options are being prepared for the Speaker, the government and other parties to consider this week.”
News that MPs can claim £10,000 for additional office costs incurred as a result of the coronavirus, Parliament’s expenses authority was also announced last week with the money used to buy additional equipment such as laptops and printers for staff having to work from home.
This comes on top of the £26,000 MPs can already claim to cover office costs. There is no suggestion, at this stage, that MP’s will receive any further additional funding to enable their remote operation.