National Assembly delegation back from Commonwealth conference


Members of the Seychelles delegation

The delegation was headed by the Speaker, Dr Patrick Herminie and comprised the Leader of the Opposition, David Pierre; proportionally elected member Maria Payet-Marie and Deputy Clerk, Luisa Waye-Hive. Also accompanying the delegation was protocol officer Betty-May Bibi.

Under the theme ‘Ensuring a relevant Commonwealth for the future’, the conference discussed several issues including ensuring adequate parliamentary scrutiny of foreign and Commonwealth affairs,  whether the Commonwealth should establish a Commissioner for Democracy, the Rule of Law and Human Rights, tackling youth unemployment and strategies to increase women's representation in parliaments in small states.

The highlight of the conference was a presentation made by Hon. Payet-Marie on behalf of the Seychellois delegation on strategies to increase women’s representation in parliaments in small states. Hon. Payet-Marie stressed that women enjoy such a high status in Seychelles and are well represented in the National Assembly mainly because of the many years of gender empowerment in the Seychelles.  Seychelles stood out from other countries in that it did not have a quota system in place to achieve such a high percentage of women representation in the assembly and in government.

During the visit, Dr Herminie also called on his homologue, the Speaker of the Parliament of Sri Lanka, Chamal Jayantha Rajapaksa, to further discuss the friendship association that was set up during the state visit of President James Michel to Sri Lanka last month. 

Both sides have agreed to promote exchanges between the two parliaments which will start by a fact-finding mission by the Clerk of the National Assembly of Seychelles.

Speaker Herminie with his Sri Lanka counterpart

Dr Herminie also met the Speaker of the People Majlis of the Republic of Maldives, Abdulla Shahid, who  apprised him of the political situation in the Maldives.

The Speaker said that "Seychelles' participation in this year's conference once again showed the importance the National Assembly attaches to the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and that the visit as a whole helped strengthen our endeavour to be more active on the parliamentary democratic front".

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