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Katjavivi heads delegation to the IPU Assembly 

2021-11-24  Staff Reporter

Katjavivi heads delegation to the IPU Assembly 
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National Assembly Speaker Peter Katjavivi yesterday led Namibia’s delegation to the 143rd Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) to be held in Madrid, Spain.

The assembly, to be hosted by the parliament of Spain in cooperation with the IPU, is scheduled for 26 – 30 November 2021.

Hundreds of delegates, inclusive of Speakers of parliament, parliamentarians and clerks of all member parliaments will meet in person in the world’s largest gathering of parliamentarians.  

The event has put in place robust and comprehensive health measures to ensure a safe assembly, including temperature checks, regular testing, limits on the numbers of delegates and mandatory face masks.

The deliberations will mainly focus on the theme of the Assembly, which is  “Contemporary challenges to democracy: Overcoming division and building community”. This comes amidst eroding public trust in political systems, growing polarisation and the spread of disinformation through social media.  The delegates will discuss what parliaments can do to address these problems.  The Speaker is also expected to make his intervention on this subject matter.

Other IPU bodies, the executive committee, the governing council, IPU standing committees as well as the forum of women parliamentarians and the forum of young parliamentarians will meet in person for the first time since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.

On the sidelines of the assembly, the Speaker and his delegation is expected to have bilateral meetings with counterparts from other member parliaments on issues of parliament-to-parliament cooperation, parliamentary democracy, human rights and cementing the already existing parliamentary relations.

The Speaker and his delegation is also expected to attend the official launch of the Parliamentary Network of the Non-Aligned Movement, representing 120 countries.

As part of its activities, the assembly will confirm the reappointment of the current secretary general, approve the financials of the organisation and consider and adopt a new strategy for the IPU, covering the years 2022-2026. The new strategy focuses on areas where the IPU can have a strong impact with regards to issues of parliamentary democracy and the human rights of MPs.  

Other Members of Parliament (MPs) who accompanied Katjavivi include Victoria Kauma, vice chairperson of the National Council, Elma Dienda, and the youthful Patience Masua.

2021-11-24  Staff Reporter

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