26th annual Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy begins its work in Tbilisi
The Pan-African African Parliament (PAP) is among international Parliamentary organisations invited to take part in the 26th Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy (I.A.O) currently underway in Tbilisi, Georgia. The Assembly is being held from 19 to 23 June 2019 under the theme: “The contribution of Parliamentarism in understanding modern Political – Social Phenomena.”
This annual meeting is a platform for world Parliamentarians to discuss various topical issues and share perspectives on challenges of modern times, in line with common religious, spiritual and moral values. Subject matters during this gathering will include terrorism, migration, climate change, the impact of technology advancement, good governance and democracy among others.
In Her address to the Assembly during the opening ceremony, Hon. Aichata Haidara Cisse, 2nd Vice-President of Africa’s continental legislature and representing Rt.Hon. Roger Nkodo Dang, challenged parliamentarians to live up to their mandate by contributing to the process of finding solutions to the issues facing humanity.
“Africa’s fortunes are finally turning around as more and more countries are enjoying socio- economic prosperity, following years of exploitation and promising slogans. However, Africa, like the rest of the world, is still facing a myriad of challenges that hold back its potential. For instance, the African Union is currently tackling the issue of refugees and internally displaced persons; youth unemployment in some countries remains alarming, while terrorism hasn’t spared our continent,” says Hon. Cisse, who is also responsible for Parliamentary diplomacy within the Bureau of the PAP.
She adds: “Platforms such the General Assembly of the I.A.O offer parliamentarians, from different parts of the world and across religious faith, the occasion to share experiences and devise strategies on how to deal with challenges posed by a globalised society. Our capacity to successfully deliver on our commitment towards our peoples resides in our ability to work together based on shared values.”
Hon. Cisse is accompanied by Hon. Noureddine Karbal, member of the PAP Permanent Committee on International Relations and Cooperation. Other international Parliamentary organisations represented at this meeting include the Inter-parliamentary Union (IPU), the Arab Inter-parliamentary Union and the European Parliament. Meetings of the General Assembly, which is the supreme body of the I.A.O, are held in June every year.
The meetings are attended by Parliamentary delegations from Member Parliaments of the organisation, namely: Albania, Armenia, Belarus, Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Greece, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Romania, the Federation of Russia, Serbia, Montenegro, Slovakia and Ukraine. Groups of Members of Parliaments from Australia, Asia, Africa and the U.S.A also take part in these gatherings.
The I.A.O is an inter-parliamentary institution set up to coordinate legislative activities of the member states and to encourage the adoption of laws in the interests of Orthodoxy in societies. The institution constantly seeks ways of cooperation with the Parliamentary organisations around the world.
As part of an existing collaborative framework with the I.A.O, the PAP was invited to participate in this year’s General Assembly following a meeting between the President of PAP and His Eminence Archbishop Ioannis of Zambia during the recently concluded 2nd Ordinary Session of the fifth Parliament which took place in May 2019.
“We stand ready to collaborate with the I.A.O especially because our people stand to benefit from the type of ideals promoted by this institution. The President of the PAP has already committed to ensuring that our working relationship is reviewed to ensure a more consistent approach in tackling issues that are of specific interest to the African continent,” concludes Hon. Cisse.