Malta CPF “trailblazing” with first Commonwealth SG dialogue
The 2015 Commonwealth Peoples’ Forum (CPF) has been described as “trailblazing” for hosting the first ever Commonwealth Secretary General all candidates dialogue with civil society participation.
On Tuesday 17 November 2015, Speaker Anglu Farrugia further endorsed the dialogue that the Parliament of Malta is championing: “I’m very honoured [to be a part] of this important event… It is an opportunity for members of civil society to engage directly with the potential candidates shortlisted for the position of Secretary General (SG) of the Commonwealth. There is no time limit… any candidate can present their candidacy up to the last minute.”
The speaker went on to say that the event would be held with “the aim of finding out their attitude to civil society, the involvement [of civil society] in participatory governance, their role in policymaking, and the impact on the decision-making process”.
CPF delegates will have a clearer idea of how far the next Secretary General will support the involvement of civil society and participatory governance Chair of the CPF Sub-Committee, Ms Jacqueline Micallef Grimaud, described the key objective of the dialogue as a means for delegates of the People’s Forum to gauge the engagement of the SG candidates with civil society. “In this way they will have a clearer idea of how far the next Secretary General will support the involvement of civil society and participatory governance. It is the first time this has happened; hopefully it will not be the last. Malta has trailblazed in the past, and whatever Malta has done has been taken on by other countries, so we sincerely hope that this will be an event that will be replicated in CHOGMs to come.”
Deputy Director of the Commonwealth Foundation, Ms Myn Garcia reiterated that Malta has a history of introducing new progress to Commonwealth processes. “It’s the very first time that the CPF is actually engaging and interacting with the parliament of the host country… We believe the role of parliamentarians is essential to participatory governance.”
The Commonwealth Secretary General all candidates dialogue will take place at 3.30pm on Wednesday 25 November 2015 in the House of Representatives at the Parliament of Malta, Valletta.
Ms Jacqueline Micallef Grimaud, Speaker Anglu Farrugia and Ms Myn Garcia at the Parliament of Malta