Parliament Conveners’ Group to Question First Minister


In a parliamentary first, the Scottish Parliament’s Conveners’ Group today announced it will question the First Minister in September following his statement on the Government’s legislative programme.

Speaking about the initiative, the Parliament’s Presiding Officer, the Rt Hon Tricia Marwick MSP, who is chair of the Conveners’ Group said:

“This initiative brings a new dimension to the scrutiny of the Government’s programme and recognises the unique role of the Conveners’ Group. 

“Given their collective knowledge and experience, the Conveners’ Group is well placed to question the First Minister about both the broad themes and the detail of his Government’s programme.

“This session will enable Conveners to hold the Government to account in a much broader sense and complements the detailed work which already happens in committees on individual pieces of legislation. 

“Conveners were unanimous in their support of the initiative and I look forward to a lively and interesting session later this year.”

Duncan McNeil MSP, Convener of the Parliament’s Health and Sport Committee added:

“Strengthening and developing the role of our Committees is something that Conveners’ Group has been considering for some time and I believe this new initiative is a positive step forward in that regard.”

Stewart Maxwell MSP, Convener of the Education and Culture Committee said:

“This initiative isn’t window dressing nor is it about making political theatre.  It’s about scrutiny and accountability and the important role our Committees play in delivering that.”


The session will be open to the public and to the media and arrangements for tickets and media access will be announced when the date for the session is confirmed later this year.

The Conveners Group is chaired by the Presiding Officer or a Deputy Presiding Officer and is a forum where Committee Conveners meet to take a strategic view on the operation of committees and to facilitate liaison between the Committees, the Parliamentary Bureau and the Scottish Parliament Corporate Body.

The Group handles a range of matters including:

  • promotion of practices to improve the performance of committees, in particular their scrutiny function; and
  • making recommendations to the Bureau on Committee business to be scheduled in the Chamber.

Further information on the Conveners’ Group can be found on the Parliament website at:

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