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Speaker to lead parliamentary delegation to Ethiopia

9 April 2019

Speaker to lead parliamentary delegation to Ethiopia, Rwanda, and Turkey

Forging new parliamentary relationships in countries where ties have not been strong, while advocating for enhanced business, education, and cultural ties, is the focus of an upcoming delegation led by the Speaker, Rt Hon Trevor Mallard.

The delegation includes Hon Dr Nick Smith MP (National), Hon Nicky Wagner MP (National), Gareth Hughes MP (Green), and Angie Warren-Clark MP (Labour). The delegation will be engaging in a comprehensive programme in the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, the Republic of Rwanda, and the Republic of Turkey.

Rt Hon Trevor Mallard said, “This will be the first time a New Zealand Speaker has led a delegation to Ethiopia and Rwanda. We share warm relationships and this visit is an important opportunity to enhance the links between our legislatures and countries. We are visiting Ethiopia and Rwanda as an affirmation of our mutual commitments to multilateral diplomacy and to learn more about our work with the United Nations, the Commonwealth, and the African Union.”

“While in Rwanda, we will be part of commemorations of the 25th anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide. I am honoured by the Speakers’ invitation to be part of this poignant commemoration. New Zealand remains proud of the role we played to have greater international recognition and intervention to prevent the conflict, and the close political relationship we have had with Rwanda ever since.”

“I am pleased to be taking the parliamentary delegation to Turkey and Anzac commemorations, at the invitation of the newly elected Speaker Mustafa Şentop. Our shared experience on the Gallipoli peninsula in 1915 will always sit at the heart of our relationship. There is scope to enhance our education, cultural, and business links with Turkey.”

Mr Speaker explained that visits of this kind promote New Zealand’s national interests abroad and also provide opportunities to share parliamentary and political developments.

“Our democracy and Parliament is looked upon as having policies and practices that are useful models for others, such as our select committee system and our innovative approaches to making parliament an inclusive and diverse institution. We are constantly evolving. Hearing about new ways of doing things, questioning assumptions, and hearing first-hand about global challenges is good for our institution and parliamentarians.”

The delegation takes place from 13 to 26 April 2019.


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