, PARIS, France, Jun 14 – As the role of Parliaments in society continues to evolve, the contribution of Senates and bicameralism in advancement of representation and development cannot be ignored, Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka told EU and African legislators on Friday.
Addressing the 20th meeting of the Association of European Senates (AES) in Paris, Speaker Lusaka committed to rally African States to form the Association of African Senates that shall promote bicameralism in Africa and continental parliamentary diplomacy.
“Bicameralism is essential in ensuring that the interests of citizens are well represented in legislative processes,” said Lusaka.
“Second, upper chambers serve as houses of review and reflection to ensure legislation resonates with the needs of the electorate.”
While admitting that oftentimes, bicameralism is dogged by unnecessary political rivalry which affects the legislative agenda, Lusaka challenged lawmakers at the meeting to embrace healthy democracy through complementarity.
Speaker Lusaka also appreciated the invitation extended to the Senate of Kenya – the first for an African House of Parliament – to the AES meeting saying “deepening Euro-African relations is an idea whose time has come.”
On his part, President of the Senate of France, Gérard Larcher reaffirmed the AES’s commitment to developing inter-parliamentary cooperation and promoting bicameralism between Europe and Africa.
“The profound historical, cultural, economic and human ties between African and Europe constitute a solid and sustainable geostrategic foundation for Euro-African partnership,” Larcher emphasized.
Speaker Lusaka is accompanied by Senator Judith Pareno, who is a member of the Speaker’s Panel.