NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF ZAMBIA CLERK LEADS TEAM OF EXPERTS IN REDRAFTING THE CPA AFRICA REGION CONSTITUTION

The Clerk of the National Assembly of Zambia, Mrs Cecilia N Mbewe, in her capacity as Chairperson of the Society of Clerks-at-the-Table (SoCATT) Africa Region led a group of experts mandated to review and redraft the entire Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Africa Region Constitution. The meeting took place from 19th to 23rd November, 2018, in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The Expert Committee had a representation of draftsmen and women from the four sub-regions of CPA Africa: Central; East; Southern; and West Africa.

In redrafting the CPA Africa Region Constitution, the Expert Committee under the leadership of the SoCATT Africa Chairperson undertook a detailed, rigorous and analytical consideration of the current CPA Africa Region Constitution. The end product was a redrafted CPA Africa Region Constitution and Regional Leadership Roster accompanied by draft Rules for Appointment of Officers of the Region. These documents were presented to the Constitution Amendment Committee by the Chairperson of SoCATT Africa and Clerk of National Assembly, Mrs Cecilia N Mbewe. After consideration and subsequent refinement by the Constitutional Review Committee, the Chairperson of the Constitutional Review Committee, Hon Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu of Ghana tabled the redrafted Constitution to the Special Executive Committee chaired by Rt. Hon Justin Muturi, MP of Kenya.  The redrafted Constitution was adopted with amendments and shall be tabled to the CPA Africa Region Annual General Meeting in 2019.

The SoCATT Africa’s contribution through its Chairperson, the Clerk of the National Assembly, to the review and eventual redrafting of the CPA Africa Region Constitution has paved the way forward as to how CPA Africa including its member Parliaments could operate regarding CPA Africa and its affairs. The redrafted CPA Africa Region Constitution is aimed at ensuring equal opportunity and representation in regional leadership positions of the Association. It is therefore, hoped that it will receive favourable consideration at the CPA Africa Annual General Meeting in 2019.