Samoan Parliamentary Manual launched
Project supported by Australian and Tasmanian Parliaments
The Samoan Legislative Assembly has launched its first ever parliamentary practice and procedure manual as Samoa celebrates its 50th anniversary of independence.
The ‘easy to use’ manual, which will assist members of parliament and the community better understand the parliament’s rules and practices, was produced with the support of the Australian and Tasmanian parliaments under a Pacific Parliamentary Partnerships program funded by AusAID. The Tasmanian Parliament is twinned with the Samoan Legislative Assembly under the partnerships program.
A procedural specialist from the Australian Parliament, Peter Banson, travelled to Samoa earlier in the year to work with Samoan parliamentary staff in drafting the manual. The Tasmanian House of Assembly’s Deputy Clerk, Peter Bennison, assisted in reviewing the manual prior to its publication.
Samoan Speaker La’auli Leuatea Polata’ivao (pictured above) was joined by Tasmanian Speaker Michael Polley, Acting Australian High Commissioner to Samoa Ryan Tierney and the Australian Parliament’s International and Community Relations Director Andres Lomp to launch the manual, at a ceremony attended by Samoan members of parliament and parliamentary staff, the New Zealand High Commissioner as well as representatives from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) which is coordinating a major parliamentary support project for Samoa.
Earlier that day a parliamentary seminar series for Samoan parliamentarians and parliamentary staff was launched as part of a joint initiative between the Samoan, Australian and Tasmanian parliaments, the University of Tasmania, AusAID and UNDP. The seminar series, unique in the Pacific region, is part of a professional development program for parliamentarians and staff.
In an agreement reached with the UNDP, the Australian and Tasmanian parliaments are providing technical expertise for the Samoa Parliamentary Support Project, which is a capacity building project for the Samoan Legislative Assembly. The support project is a joint initiative of the UNDP and AusAID.