Chairman Senate calls for enhanced cooperation amongst the Commonwealth Parliaments to confront the challenges

London: The Chairman Senate Farooq H. Naek said that the Commonwealth Parliaments must strive to enhance institutional capacities with a view to enhance quality of human resource, use of modern technology and IT applications in order to improve the quality of people in the Commonwealth countries. Mr. Naek, who was invited as the lead speaker to address the final plenary of the 57th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference (CPC 2011), said that the Commonwealth was an esteemed forum for achieving peace and stability, promoting values of democracy and human rights peace, and uplifting quality of the peoples in the Member countries.

Mr. Naek said that Pakistan had made unprecedented progress by restoring supremacy of Parliament and optimizing its functioning to achieve multi-pronged goals and objectives. He said that the Parliament of Pakistan had unanimously passed landmark 18th and 19th constitutional amendments. He said that the amendments were rooted in former Prime Minister Mohtarma Shaheed Benazir Bhutto’s policy and vision of political reconciliation and harmony.

Mr. Naek said that the restoration of the Constitution to its original form also mirrored fruition of the dream of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, former prime minister and architect of the original Constitution. He further said that the realization of the goal of political stability and parliament’s supremacy would not have been possible without the selfless statesmanship of His Excellency Asif Ali Zardari, the President of Pakistan who handed over his political and constitutional powers to the parliament.

Mr. Naek said that the mankind was passing through turbulent times. He further said that all regional parliaments of the world including the Commonwealth nations, were struggling to cope with numerous daunting challenges on different internal and external fronts. He also said that the challenge lied in effective legislation and oversight of government policies to bring a meaningful change for our people. He remarked that such a noble goal would remain a dream in the absence of parliamentary reforms, and transformation of institutions to meet the challenges being faced by the world.

Mr. Naek urged the Commonwealth parliamentarians to join hands to maximize inter-parliamentary cooperation be making the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association relevant and responsive to the demands of the time. He said that a long-term strategic partnership, both inter-parliamentary and interstate, was vital to build synergies and pool resources, increase foreign investment, and technology transfer for mutual benefit. He also emphasized that the Parliamentarians must work to ensure religious tolerance as a precursor for durable peace, promote gender equality to spur national progress, address environmental concerns for sustainable development, increase bilateral trade for mutual benefit and curb menaces like drug and human trafficking that hamper growth and destroy social fabric. He remarked that with shared vision and collective action by the parliamentarians, major accomplishments can be realized.

Mr. Naek called for a firm consensus among the regional economies to deepen financial and economic cooperation. He suggested that CPA members could consider reducing tariffs on imports and creating Free Trade Areas. In that context, he called on the parliaments in the developed countries within the Commonwealth family to urge their governments to provide market access and share resources with the developing countries in order to enable them to make progress and meet challenges being faced by them.

On the sidelines of the Conference, the Chairman Senate had useful interactions with the Speakers of House of Lords and House of Commons of UK, as well as of Indian Lok Sabha and Sri Lanka, and leaders of parliamentary delegations from other Commonwealth countries.

For more information, contact:
Public Service Obligation to Chairman
Syed Hasnain Haider
Senate of Pakistan
Tel: +9251 920 4564 534
Fax: +9251 920 5703
H.No.7, Cat-II, G-8/2,