Councillor Christine Scipio-O’Dean recently returned to the Island having attended the 60th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference and 34th Small Branches Conference in Cameroon, in October of this year.
The 34th Small Branches Conference comprised of three plenary sessions:
1st Plenary Session – Establishing the role of a chairperson for small branches
2nd Plenary Session – The challenge of small states vulnerabilities in their quest for social and economic development. Delegates unanimously endorsed Councillor Scipio-O’Dean’s recommendation – ‘Education is fundamental to improving small states’ resilience to improve social and economic outcomes that will be central to all policy decisions’.
3rd Plenary Session – The role of Parliament in providing for the most vulnerable in society
During the 60th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference, Councillor Scipio-O’Dean was able to attend the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians Business Meeting where it was noted that women continue to be disproportionately represented in governance and at all levels of decision-making.
Councillor Scipio-O’Dean also attended two workshops – Joining hands for women’s rights: The role of Parliamentarians in gender empowerment and How can Parliament ensure that young people are placed at the centre of sustainable development? – The role of Education.
Councillor Scipio-O’Dean was able to take part in various discussions during the General Assembly meeting where the Hon Dr.Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury,MP, Speaker of Bangladesh Parliament was elected Chairperson of the CPA Executive Committee. She also attended the meeting of the New Executive Committee where the Hon Ronald Kaindee MP from Malaysia was elected as Vice Chairperson. As part of the British Islands and Mediterranean Region, the CPA St Helena Branch will for the first time sit on the CPA Executive Committee. Members of the St Helena Branch agreed that Councillor Derek Thomas should undertake this role, which will run for a three year period. Councillor Thomas also became a member of the CPA Planning and Review Subcommittee.
On attending the Conference, Councillor Christine Scipio-O’Dean commented:
“Representing St Helena and being present at both the 60th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference and 34th Small Branches Conference in Cameroon was an experience that was beneficial for myself and for the Island. The profile of the Island has been raised by my attendance and will remain raised by our presence on the CPA Executive Committee which offers the Island more exposure and involvement in the decisions of the Executive.”
During her transit in the UK Councillor Scipio-O’Dean had various meetings with SHG UK Representative, Kedell Worboys MBE and Andrew Tuggey, Chief Executive & Secretary CPA, the Lucy Faithfull Foundation, Colleagues in DFID, Lord David Shutt, Lord Nigel Jones, Baroness Lindsay Northover, the Child Safeguarding and Domestic Violence Policy Officer, and with Deputy Head, Falklands and South Atlantic Department. She also visited Queensmill and Salusbury schools.
During her short time on Ascension Island Councillor Scipio-O’Dean was able to meet with the Administrator, Ascension Island Council and Dr Judith Brown, tour the Airhead facilities and the US Base facilities, visit Green Mountain National Park, Two Boats School, and Babcock and attend the Ascension Island Safeguarding Board meeting.
A full copy of Councillor Christine Scipio-O’Dean’s report can be found on the SHG website at http://www.sainthelena.gov.sh/committee-reports/
Three photos are attached to this release.
17 November 2014