Home ARCHIVES Mali: The 3rd edition of “Parliament At Home” in Kayes

Mali: The 3rd edition of “Parliament At Home” in Kayes

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After Ségou, the capital of the Balanzans and Koulikoro, the capital of the Meguétan, Kayes hosted the third outing of the Malian parliamentarians entitled “Parliament At Home” from 24 to 26 April 2017. The meeting took place in the conference room of the Kayes Regional Council.

The objective of “Parliament At Home” is to explain the missions and roles of the parliamentarians, elected to the National Assembly of Mali. At this meeting, representatives of the seven circles of the Kayes region, civil society, youth associations, women, religious leaders and political parties of the opposition were present.

The opening ceremony was chaired by the first deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, Honorable Moussa Timbiné. In his address he thanked the public, on behalf of Issaka Sidibe, president of the National Assembly of Mali, for their excellent presence and, above all, for having agreed to host this edition of the “Parliament At Home”. “Despite the enormous amount of work that the National Assembly has done to triple legislative action, control of government action and parliamentary diplomacy, it is unknown to many of our compatriots,” he said.

Citizens asked questions about the National Assembly. How does it work? What is its composition? What is immunity? What are the methods of voting? What is the role of the member?
The “Parliament At Home” initiative aims to correct this misunderstanding of the functioning and organization of the parliamentary institution.

The National Assembly is structured on the basis of a number of organs and services, each with its own specific competencies.

Third institution of the Republic, in the order of enumeration established by article 25 of our Constitution of 1992, the National Assembly appears as one of the most important foundations of the institutional and democratic system. Its importance stems not only from the fact that it is a result of universal suffrage, but also from the prerogatives conferred upon it by the Constitution and its relations with other institutions.

Due to its internal organization, it is representative of the Malian population in all its sensibilities. With 147 deputies, the 2013-2018 legislature includes a bureau of 23 members, five parliamentary groups, eleven general committees and a control commission.

Women Representation

The first democratic era legislature in Mali (1992-1997) was disappointing for women. They registered only three (3) MPs. This number was raised to 18 in the second legislature (1997-2000), thanks in particular to the quota system that constituencies must have at least three (3) MPs.

But, in the third legislature (2002-2007) they returned to 15. Following the death of the member for Sikasso in 2015, women parliamentarians are only 14 today. Thus after making a significant increase between the 1st and 2nd legislature, the presence of women in the National Assembly of Mali has decreased slightly since 2002.

Each of the women elected had a different entry into politics. Some have been interested in politics only with the advent of democracy, others have been immersed since their infancy in a highly politicized family environment.

By initiating “Parliament At Home”, in partnership with the European Parliamentarians with Africa (AWEPA) – European Parliamentarians Partners of Africa – the National Assembly wants to implement its mass communication and proximity plan, go to the people, talk about the National Assembly, in their localities. To gather the expectations and opinions of local populations and elites on what the National Assembly must do to be better known to our populations.

In addition to the presentation of the National Assembly, the role of the deputies and the restitution of the flagship laws of past sessions, a photo exhibition during these three days made it possible to review some emblematic figures of the parliamentary history of our country, from Independence.

This photo exhibition is essential because it reconciles us with our past but also it makes it possible to reconstitute a part of our parliamentary history through the photos of former deputies.

Issa BATHILY
Kayes