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TitleStrengthening Parliament as an Institution: Some Recommended Practices
AuthorOniang'o, Ruth
SubjectParliamentary Issues
Date of Publication2004
Number of Pages09 pages
Geographical CoverageKenya, Sub-Saharan Afarica
KeywordsDemocracy, Parliament
AbstractIn this Lessons Note, Hon. Prof. Ruth Oniang’o, a member of Parliament in Kenya and Vice Chair of the African Capacity Building Foundation’s Technical Advisory Panel and Network on National Parliaments and Parliamentary Institutions draws on Kenya’s experience to highlight the rapidly expanding role and responsibilities of Parliamentarians in the African democratic setting, and identifies core areas in which capacity of Parliamentarians will need to be strengthened in order to enhance their effectiveness. The Note contends that a Parliamentarian is faced with multiple responsibilities for which he/she will need to be appropriately capacitated to allow for effective and sensible contribution to national development process. To meet modern day parliamentary responsibilities including intellectual challenges facing the Parliamentarian, the Note calls for the establishment of offices for parliamentarians, the provision of research support, especially in the form of a well-established research center, the setting up of an education department for continuous training of Parliamentarians to enhance knowledge of Standing Orders, to develop and strengthen skills for the drafting of bills and motions, and to raise their level of understanding of the procedures in the preparation of parliamentary questions, among others.
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