Speaker of the House Shirley Osborne. (SO Photo)

Speaker of the House Wins Regional Nomination for Commonwealth Parliamentary Post

The Honourable Shirley Osborne, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Montserrat was elected as the Region’s candidate for the position of Chairperson of the Executive Committee of the CPA International which will become vacant at the 63rd Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference due in Dhaka, Bangladesh in November, 2017.

Nominations were held during the 18th Biennial Conference of Presiding Officers and Clerks of the Caribbean, Americas and Atlantic (CAA) Region of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) held in Tobago, from August 13th – 17th.  The other contender was Speaker Michael Carrington QC of Barbados.

In the Resolution unanimously passed at this meeting, and signed by the Hon. Speaker McKeeva Bush OB, MLA, JP, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of the Cayman Islands and Chairperson of the CAA Region Presiding Officers and Clerks, the Conference notes that Speaker Osborne has “satisfactorily served the Association as Regional Representative for the CAA, as Regional Chairperson for the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) and as Vie-Chairperson of the CPA, and that she “be the Caribbean Americas and Atlantic Region nominee for election to the position of Chairperson of the CPA Executive Committee.”

Founded in 1911, the CPA is an association of more than 17 000 parliamentarians from among 185 member parliaments in 53 countries comprising 9 regions – Africa, Asia, Australia, British Isles Mediterranean, Canada, the CAA, India, Pacific and South East Asia.

The Chairperson of the CPA serves a three-year term, and, says Ms Osborne, “The next three years will be a period of intense activity to modernize and re-design the organisation. This will require, among other things, strong social, diplomatic and political skills as well as a deep awareness of world affairs and an effortless connectivity with global development trends such as Brexit and the still-galvanizing global women’s movement, migrant and refugee issues and climate change, for example.

“I believe that I possess these competencies to a degree that is quite high enough to allow me to perform the duties of Chairperson of the CPA Executive Committee in an exemplary fashion. I believe that I possess the necessary vision, skills and fortitude, and that I have the energy, intellect and ability to lead the CPA to success through this critical and transformational period.”

The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association is, above all, committed to strengthening democracy and supporting good governance throughout its 185 member parliaments and strives to engender an increased sense of common purpose and mutual support amongst its members.

“My colleagues, both in my region and in the wider CPA can be fully confident that I will carry out whatever duties might be required of me as CPA Chair in such a manner as to bring nothing but honour, prestige and distinction to our region and to our organisation, were I to win the election come November.”