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Uganda Vies for Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Headquarters

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uganda vies for commonwealth parliamentary association headquarters
uganda vies for commonwealth parliamentary association headquarters
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Uganda has asked other members of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) to help its bid to have the group’s headquarters in Kampala.

Ugandan Members of Parliament, led by Hon. Enos Asiimwe from Kabula County, submitted their bid at the 66th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference (CPC) on October 4, 2023, in Accra, Ghana.

Asiimwe and his colleagues, who spoke on behalf of Speaker Anita Among, stated that Uganda is in an advantageous location and has all the necessary requirements to host the headquarters.

The legislator added that having the CPA headquarters in a developing country like Uganda would bring substantial economic opportunities. He said, “The benefits of hosting the headquarters include organizing conferences, creating jobs at the secretariat, and opportunities for infrastructure development, given that the CPA is a well-funded organization that would build its headquarters in the host country.”

The main event, held under the theme, ‘The Commonwealth Charter 10 years on: Values and Principles for Parliaments to Uphold,’ brought together more than 500 parliamentarians, parliamentary staff, and decision-makers from across the Commonwealth to discuss pressing issues facing today’s parliaments and society.

Hon. Asuman Basalirwa, Bugiri Municipality MP, expressed his opinion, saying, “I believe that Uganda has the qualifications to host the CPA headquarters. As a long-standing member of the East African Community, we have hosted some of the community’s institutions, such as the East African Development Bank, since the 1970s.”

During the 65th conference, CPA members suggested relocating the association headquarters from Britain to any willing member.

Currently, the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association comprises approximately 180 branches, which include national parliaments and sub-national legislatures of Commonwealth member states. These branches are categorized into nine regions: Africa, Asia, Australia, British Islands and Mediterranean, Canada, Caribbean, Americas and Atlantic, India, Pacific, and South East Asia. The CPA Headquarters Secretariat is currently based in London.

Given the growing emphasis on the scrutiny of parliamentarians and parliaments, the CPA conference provided an opportunity for members to benefit from professional development, supportive learning, and the exchange of best practices with colleagues from Commonwealth parliaments, in addition to the participation of leading international organizations.

The conference also addressed various workshops where members collectively discussed matters of cooperation among member states, such as global warming, terrorism, human rights, and strategies for tackling poverty while achieving sustainable trade and economic development.