One of the largest annual gatherings of Commonwealth Parliamentarians will take place this week at the 64th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference (CPC) hosted by the CPA Uganda Branch and the Parliament of Uganda. The annual flagship event will bring together over 500 Parliamentarians, parliamentary staff and decision makers from across the Commonwealth for this unique conference and networking opportunity. The CPC offers the prospect of the coming together of the CPA’s global membership to address the critical issues facing today’s Parliaments.

The 64th CPC conference will be hosted by the CPA President Designate (2018-2019), Rt Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, Speaker of the Parliament of Uganda from 22 to 29 September 2019 in Kampala. The CPA Executive Committee will also attend the conference, headed by the Chairperson of the CPA Executive Committee, Hon, Emilia Lifaka, MP, Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly of Cameroon.

With the ever-increasing focus on greater scrutiny of Parliamentarians and the overall public trust deficit in Parliaments, the CPA’s annual conference offers the opportunity for Members to benefit from professional development, supportive learning and the sharing of best practice with colleagues from Commonwealth Parliaments together with the participation of leading international organisations. The main conference theme for the 64th CPC is: ‘Adaption, engagement, and evolution of Parliaments in a rapidly changing Commonwealth’.

During the 64th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference, there will also be a number of additional conferences and meetings including: 37th CPA Small Branches Conference; 6th triennial Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) Conference; 64th CPA General Assembly; meetings of the CPA Executive Committee; and the Society of Clerks at the Table (SOCATT) meetings. This year, the conference will hold elections for the Chairperson of the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP), the CPA Treasurer and the CPA Small Branches Chairperson for new three-year terms.

The conference programme will include conference plenaries and ten CPC workshops for Parliamentarians, with some workshops focusing on gender, youth and the CPA’s Small Branches. Workshops will be held during the conference on a wide range of other topics including: Innovation in Parliament: the impact of science and technology on how Parliament works today; the role of Parliament in facilitating persons with disabilities as electors, candidates and legislators; strategies to deal with youth unemployment; combatting rapid urbanisation and rural decline – A challenge for the Commonwealth; the possible effects of United Kingdom ‘Brexit’ on CPA Small Branches; fostering a culture of respect, fairness and dignity: sexual harassment has no place in Legislatures; the role of Parliament in the doctrine of the Separation of Powers; Enhancing Transparency and Accountability; Post Legislative Scrutiny (PLS) – a dimension of the oversight function of Parliament; how the updated CPA Benchmarks for Democratic Legislatures has been used to strengthen the capacity of CPA Legislatures.

As a financial member of the Commonwealth Parliament Association [CPA], the Cook Islands Parliament is being represented by the Speaker of Parliament, the Hon. Niki Rattle at the 64th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference in Uganda from 22 – 29 September.

Speaker Rattle is being nominated and supported by Pacific Parliaments at the July 2019 Presiding Officers and Clerks Conference in Brisbane as candidate for the next Chairperson of the Small Branches of the CPA. The election takes place on the last day of the Conference on the 29th September. We wish Madam Speaker the very best in this milestone occasion.

Information about the 64th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference (CPC) can be found at the official conference website www.cpc2019.org and for further updates please visit the CPA website www.cpahq.org/cpahq/cpc2019.

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Images available at www.cpahq.org/cpahq/flickr