10 years of parliamentary cooperation are being marked as three MSPs today embark on a visit to the National Assembly of Malawi.
Deputy Presiding Officer, Elaine Smith MSP is leading the delegation, accompanied by James Dornan MSP and Liam McArthur MSP. The delegation will undertake a programme of meetings and visits at the National Assembly of Malawi and in Lilongwe and Blantyre.
The MSPs will deliver workshops for Malawian MPs on subjects including budget and legislative scrutiny and running committee inquiries. They will also join the Speaker of the National Assembly and Malawian MPs in marking ten years of co-operation and engagement between the Scottish and Malawian legislatures.
Deputy Presiding Officer, Elaine Smith MSP, said:
“It is a great privilege to have this opportunity to visit the National Assembly of Malawi. Over ten years, our Parliaments have established a relationship of cooperation and mutual learning and I look forward to seeing for myself some of this work on the ground.”
In addition to their programme at the National Assembly, the delegation will also visit a number of projects which have been supported by Scottish organisations, including Mary’s Meals and MUMs Recipes (Malawi Underprivileged Mothers), Mendulo Girls Go for Health and the Scottish Government during the last ten years.
Ms Smith continued:
“The unique relationship between Scotland and Malawi, which dates back to David Livingstone’s missionary journeys across Africa, continues to connect our countries. Many Scots, including some of my own constituents, have been carrying out valuable and successful work in Malawi and I look forward to seeing some of this at first hand.”
Three MSPs and two Scottish Parliament officials are taking part in the delegation, representing the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Scotland Branch (CPASB), departing for Malawi on 5 February.
2005 saw the first CPASB delegation visit Malawi. The development of parliamentary democracy through focussed advice and assistance is central to the Scottish Parliament’s work in Malawi.
The CPA consists of the national, provincial, state and territorial parliaments and legislatures of the countries of the Commonwealth. The CPA has around 185 branches and a membership of 17,000 parliamentarians. It promotes respect for the rule of law and individual rights and freedoms, and by pursuit of the positive ideals of parliamentary democracy.