Antigua & Barbuda


A person elected to a seat in the House as a representative of one of the 36 electoral districts into which Antigua and Barbuda is divided. By section 46(3) of the Constitution, a Speaker elected from outside the House of Representatives, becomes the 37th Members of the House of Representatives.


A Member presenting a motion in the House or in committee. When debate is permitted, the mover speaks immediately following the proposing of the question to the House.


A proposal moved by a Member, for the House to do something, or order something done or express an opinion with regard to some matter. In order to be placed before the House for consideration, a motion by a private member must be duly moved and seconded. No seconder is required for government motions. Once adopted, a motion becomes an order or a resolution of the House.

Minutes of Proceedings

The formal printed record of business occurring during a committee meeting.

Ministerial responsibility

The principle that ministers are responsible to Parliament for their actions and those of their departmental officials.

Compare: responsible government.

Ministers’ Statements

See: Statements by Ministers.


See: Cabinet minister.


A formal communication between the House and the Senate that accompanies bills or conveys a request. The Governor-General may also communicate with the Parliament or either House by message.

Member of Parliament

Generally, a person either elected to the House or appointed to the Senate.


See: Erskine May’s Parliamentary Practice.

Marginal note

A short explanatory note inscribed in the margin of a bill to serve as a title for each paragraph. Marginal notes are not officially part of a bill and cannot be amended by motion, though they may be changed by the Chief Parliamentary Counsel if amendments to the clause require it.

Mandatory instruction

An instruction which directs the work of a committee in an express and precise manner. The committee is obliged to follow a mandatory instruction from the House.

Majority government

A government formed by the party or the coalition of parties holding the majority of seats in the House.

Compare: minority government.

Main motion

The principal question before the House or a committee. A proposed modification to it, or an attempt to supersede it, is considered a subsidiary or secondary motion.

Compare: subsidiary motion.

Maiden speech

The first speech made in the House by a new Member. By tradition, the Speaker/President of the Senate recognizes a Member rising to make such a speech in preference to others, and the Member may read from notes on this occasion.


A large, heavy and richly-ornamented staff which is the symbol of authority of the House. When the Speaker/President of the Senate takes the Chair, the Marshal of the Parliament places the Mace on the Table to signify the House is in session.