14 October 2004
|Coat of arms of Antigua and Barbuda.|
The seminar is organised by the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) on 13 and 14 October 2004. It follows Antigua and Barbuda's March 2004 General Election which brought in a new government led by Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer.
The main objective of this seminar is to familiarise first-time Members of Parliament in the workings of the assembly. Among the speakers are CPA Secretary-General Denis Marshall and President of the Senate of Trinidad and Tobago Dr Linda Baboolal. Mr Marshall will facilitate discussions on the role and operation of Parliament, its members and officials.
Among the topics on the agenda are an analysis of the Constitution of Antigua and Barbuda, the role of the presiding officer and other officials, standing orders, parliamentary privilege and members' ethics, and women in parliament. The seminar will also look at accountability and transparency in parliament; the role of the Opposition; as well as parliament and the media.
This is the CPA's first post-election programme in Antigua and Barbuda. It has conducted 31 seminars around the Commonwealth since 1991, when Commonwealth Heads of Government recognised the association's role in promoting democracy.
Focusing mainly on countries with new parliamentary systems or an unusually high intake of new members at elections, each seminar is led by a team of CPA members and officials from a cross-section of Parliaments who explain their assemblies' procedures without prescribing any one form of parliamentary practice.