In a special sitting, the President of the PAP, Hon. Bethel Nnaemeka Amadi, paid tribute to the former Presidents of the Parliament, Hon. Gertrude Mongella (2004 – 2009), and Hon. Moussa Idriss Ndélé (2009 – 2012). He said that they “laid the foundations for this continental institution at a time when the concept of a supra continental body was not sweet music to the ears of many on the continent. Today, we in the Pan-African Parliament recognize their labour of love, their contributions to the development of this great institution and as we honour them today, we honour our institution and urge them to always carry on the flame of the Pan-African Parliament wherever they may be.”
The President of the PAP also called on the Ministers being honourd to assist in convincing their governments to adopt the proposed amended Protocol of the PAP which will be presented to the African Union (AU) Heads of State and Government in their forthcoming Summit in January 2013 in Addis Ababa. “We therefore call on your Excellencies to prevail on your colleagues, Ministers of Foreign and State and Government to approve the granting of the legislative and oversight functions to the Pan-African Parliament by adopting the draft amended protocol in its entirety, as approved by the Ministers of Justice and Attorneys General of Member States and Governments”, he said.
On their part, the former Presidents and the Ministers pledged their support for the PAP and the proposed amended Protocol.
The Ministers honoured were H.E. Wycliffe Oparanya, Minister of Planning of Kenya; H.E. Musa Sirma, Minister of East African Affairs of Kenya; H.E. Moses Asaga, Minister of Labour and Employment of Ghana; H.E. Hassabo Mohammed Abdel-Rahman, Minister of Decentralized Governance of Sudan; and H.E. Paurina Mpariwa, Minister of Labour of Zimbabwe.
Earlier, the House debated a report presented by the Fourth Vice President of the PAP, Hon. Juliana Kantengwa, on the African Speakers Conference which was organized by the PAP on 30th and 31st August 2012 here in Midrand with the theme “the Role of Parliaments in Promoting Intra-African Trade to Achieve Development and Employment in Africa”.
Hon. Kantengwa noted that the conference had resolved that parliaments, through the appropriate committees, place polices that can help to support trade integration within the continent and that the PAP drafts model laws that harmonizes trade legislation, regulations and standards.
She also mentioned that the conference had agreed to sensitize respective National Parliaments on the need for the PAP to have legislative powers to ensure effective oversight of AU organs and to achieve the goal of harmonization.
The PAP’s First Ordinary Session of the Third Parliament convened on Monday 8th October and will continue until Friday 19th October 2012.
Source: Pan-African Parliament (PAP) – Press Release – 16 October 2012