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Former Speaker to take part in mission

Office of the Speaker of the House of Representatives

Rt Hon Trevor Mallard
For release: 19 March 2018

Former Speaker to take part in mission to safeguard human rights of Parliamentarians

The former Speaker Rt Hon David Carter MP will this week be part of an Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians mission to the Maldives, at the invitation of the IPU Secretary General and in cooperation with the People’s Majlis (the legislature of the Maldives). He will be joined by a counterpart from the Parliament of Serbia and the Manager of the IPU’s Human Rights Programme.

The Speaker of the House Rt Hon Trevor Mallard said, “New Zealand Members of Parliament are often sought after to participate in election observation and other missions aimed at maintaining democratic ideals and promoting human rights. I am pleased that such an experienced member will be able to participate in this important mission.”

The IPU, the world organisation of Parliaments, has been involved in the political situation in the Maldives, including by examining the cases of opposition members before the IPU Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians and assisting in the country’s transition towards democracy.

This week’s mission builds on this involvement and practically aims to do the following:

• Acquire a better understanding of the most recent allegations of harassment, legal proceedings against members of the People’s Majlis, and the action taken by the authorities to look into those allegations;

• Measures to ensure that Parliament can fully discharge its legislative and oversight functions freely and independently and that its members can do their work unhindered, without fear of intimidation and harassment; and.

• Build confidence and trust between state institutions in the context of the forthcoming presidential election, including through discussions on underlying structural and institutional obstacles.

Following the mission in the Maldives, Rt Hon David Carter will lead the New Zealand delegation to the 138th IPU Assembly in Switzerland as our Permanent Representative to the IPU for the 52nd Parliament.

ENDS


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