The Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces of the Republic of South Africa, Mr Mninwa Mahlangu (of the ruling African National Congress), has been elected the President of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) for the coming year. In a statement on the website of the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa on Friday 14 September 2012 (http://www.parliament.gov.za/live/content.php?Item_ID=2451), Mr Mahlangu’s tenure as the President of the association is was confirmed with effect from 14 September 2012 at the end of the 58th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference which took place in Colombo, Sri Lanka until the conclusion of the 59th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference.
The 59th Conference is scheduled to take place in South Africa from 28 August – 6 September 2013, in Johannesburg. As the host of the next conference South Africa was entitled to nominate Mr. Mahlangu, who assumed the role of Vice President of the CPA at the 57th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference in 2011 in London, United Kingdom and has represented the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa at the CPA for a number of years.
In 2007 he was elected for three years to the position of Chairperson of the CPA Africa Region, driving the development of the CPA’s strategic plan for 2008 to 2011.
About Mr. Mninwa Mahlangua
A member of South Africa’s first democratic Parliament in 1994, Mr. Mahlangu has held a number of strategic positions in Parliament, the regional and inter-parliamentary organisation and the African National Congress. These include as:
- The Pan African Parliament and Working Group on the Pan African Parliament;
- Deputy Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces and National Assembly Whip;
- Portfolio Committees on Constitutional Affairs, Provincial and local government;
- Governance and Legal, Political and Deployee Committees of the the African National Congress;
- Co-Chairperson of CODESA (multiparty negotiating Congress for a Democratic South Africa);
- The Constitutional Assembly and Transitional Executive Council.
The National Council of Provinces
The National Council of Provinces of the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa of which Mr. Mahlangu is currently its Chairperson, came into existence with the adoption of South Africa’s first democratic in 1994. It provides South Africa’s nine provinces with a forum in which to engage with the national government on matters concerning areas of shared national and provincial legislative powers. It also oversees the programmes and activities of national government relating to provincial and local government matters. The NCOP is constituted to ensure that provinces are given an effective voice in the national legislative process. It consists of 9 provincial delegations, i.e. a delegation for each of the nine provinces. A delegation consists of 6 permanent delegates and 4 special delegates. The premier of a province is the head of that province’s delegation, but he or she can select any other member to lead the delegation in his or her absence. In exercising its legislative power, the NCOP may consider, pass, amend, propose amendments to or reject any legislation before it.
About the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
The CPA is an association of Commonwealth Parliamentarians from Parliaments and Legislatures of most of the Commonwealth states. South Africa joined the Commonwealth in December 1931 but left in May 1961, when it became a republic under the apartheid rule of the National Party. In 1995, following our first democratic election, South Africa rejoined the Commonwealth and the CPA. The CPA’s mission is to promote Parliamentary democracy by enhancing knowledge and understanding of democratic governance. It seeks to further cooperation among member Parliaments and Legislatures.
The management and staff of ETHICORE Political Consulting congratulates Mr. Mahlangu on his historic nomination as President of CPA, a position he is capable of fulfilling with distinction given his consistent track record of achievement and commitment to advancing and strengthening parliamentary democracy and governance. Mr. Mahlangu’s election to the presidency of the CPA at the 58th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference held in Colombo, Sri Lanka profoundly coincides with South Africa’s readmission to the CPA during the 1995 Conference in Sri Lanka. The African continent is presented with unique challenges and opportunities for strengthening parliamentary governance and democracy, in pursuit of continent development and integration. The hosting of the 59th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference to be held on African soil in South Africa in 2013, must make significant contribution to advancing the deepening and strengthening of Parliamentary governance and democracy through practical measures to empower parliamentarians and legislatures to deal with and confront Africa’s development and governance challenges with innovative solutions. Critical in this regard is to strengthen measures of dialogues, engagement and public participation between parliamentarians, legislators and non-parliamentary stakeholders.
For enquiries and commentary on South Africa’s Presidency of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), South Africa’s hosting of the 59th CPA Conference in 2013 and the National Council of Provinces of the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa, kindly do not hesitate to contact us.