Earlier this week, the Hon. Dennis Lister, JP, MP, Speaker of the House of Assembly represented Bermuda at the Common and Overseas Territories Speakers’ Conference 2023 in Anguilla.
The conference which took place from April 3-5, was hosted by the Speaker of the House of Assembly in Anguilla, the Hon. Barbara Webster-Bourne.
On Monday (April 3) Speaker Webster-Bourne welcomed British Overseas Territories Speakers from Anguilla, Bermuda Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, Montserrat, Saint Helena, Turks and Caicos Islands, and The United Kingdom. The goal of this year’s conference was to examine key tenets of strong legislatures and outline a roadmap to deepen Parliamentary Democracy and support Good Governance in each Overseas Territory.
Speakers subsequently committed to working together to create a unique and modern partnership to strengthen parliamentary democracy. Topics presented ranged from financial autonomy of parliaments and the establishment of an independent parliamentary service to that of parliamentary security to ensure the safety of parliamentarians.
“To support development in the Overseas Territories, the UK Government should provide ring-fenced parliamentary funding to ensure each Overseas Territory legislature has a dedicated building in which to carry out its activities and duties; this would ensure such funding is not postponed or cancelled in the face of competing priorities.”
Speaker Lister said, “It was an honour to represent Bermuda at the second annual Common and Overseas Territories Speaker’s Conference. With this year’s theme of Deepening Democracy in the Overseas on Territory, it was a pleasure to be joined by representatives of the British Overseas Territories Youth Summit, as their involvement is critical for creating the future of a stronger parliamentary democracy.”
The Commons and Overseas Territories Speakers’ Conference 2023 has also issued a communique summarising its conclusions. The full communique from the inaugural Commons and Overseas Territories Speakers’ Conference 2022 is available in the link here https://www.parliament.uk/
The Speaker was accompanied by the Clerk to the Legislature, Mrs. Shernette Wolffe.
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