The Conference of Speakers and Heads of African Parliaments (CoSAP) has kicked off in Abuja, the capital of Nigeria.
The conference which was initiated by Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, Speaker of the Nigerian House of Representatives along with fellow Speakers from Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda, Senegal and South Africa intends to broaden collaboration and cooperation among African legislators.
Launched on October 12, 2020 during the lock down, the Conference of Speakers and Heads of African Parliaments (CoSAP) has become a kernel for parliamentary thoughts and discourses across Africa.
It is expected to foster unity among the heads of parliament, speakers, the national assemblies across Africa while advancing Africa’s growth stability and development.
Themed: “Enhancing Africa’s Post-Covid Economic Recovery Through Parliamentary Leadership”, this is the first physical conference of CoSAP and it is expected to wrap up by May 11, 2022.
Ahead of conference, Speaker Mustafa Nias of the Senegalese National Assembly, Speaker of the National Assembly of South Africa, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, South Sudanese Parliament Speaker, Jemma Nunu Kumba arrived at the Nnamdi Azikwe Airport, Abuja yesterday.
Zimbabwe’s Speaker of Parliament Hon. Advocate Jacob Mudenda, the Speaker of Ghanaian Parliament, Rt Hon. Alban Sumana Bagbin are also in attendance.
The Conference was declared open by President of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, ably represented by Nigeria’s Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo.
Appropriately titled in the wake of the devastating effects of Covid-19 that ground the world to a halt, parliaments worldwide are expected to take a leading role in the recovery agenda of their nations, the task is more pertinent on Africa whose economies took a severe shock from the effects of the pandemic.
Advocate Mudenda will be speaking on “Investing in Human Capital Development: Legislative Priorities in the Covid-19 Era”.
Some other topics at the plenary will include ‘Africa’s debt trap, implications, imperatives and impact in the Covid-19 Era’, as well as ‘National budgeting and effective Legislative Oversight in the Covid-19 era’.
Following the launch of CoSAP, the founding members initiated the African Speakers Debt cancellation campaign initiative (DCCI), and advocacy birthed as a means of establishing a collective Pan-African parliamentary voice to support the Global campaigns advocating for Africa’s debt cancellation against the backdrop of the incapacitating effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on African economies.