Honourable Members

Let me start by wishing you and your family a joyful, bright, healthy, prosperous and Happy New Year ahead!

The start of 2016 marked the start of my tenure as the 7th Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), a proud and distinguished organisation. I am humbled by this honour conferred by the 61st General Assembly and am committed to working tirelessly as your servant leader across all nine regions of the organisation.

In the coming four years, this pivotal role offers a unique and privileged opportunity to work closely with you to build on the achievements of my predecessor, the late Dr. William F. Shija and latterly, the former Acting Secretary-General Mr Joe Omorodion, to further reinvigorate and renew the CPA so that it fully achieves its potential and vitality in the 21st century. In this context, I echo and endorse the highly pertinent comments of the Honourable Chairperson, Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury MP, in stating that the ‘CPA is a unique platform of Parliaments of Commonwealth countries with great potential to effectuate innovative changes in addressing the common concerns for ensuring the welfare of its people’.

In the past few days, I have been deeply impressed by the enormous enthusiasm and commitment shown by my staff in advancing the CPA mandate. Over the coming weeks and months, I will be working closely with them to develop and deliver an ambitious business plan to 2017 under the auspices of the CPA International Executive Committee led by the Honourable Chairperson.

As the CPA HQ Secretariat moves forward to expand and professionalise its international programmes so that they are impactful, co-ordinated, relevant and cost effective, coupled with strengthening our organisational governance, I would welcome receiving your views, assistance and offers of collaboration.

I am convinced that an empowered and strengthened CPA International Secretariat working in a transparent, constructive and responsive manner with our membership will allow us to realise the CPA’s dynamism and potential.

Honourable Members, allow me to conclude this short New Year’s message by recalling an African proverb which I respectfully believe should guide our work ahead. It states ‘If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.’

Thank you and Happy New Year.

Mr Akbar Khan
Commonwealth Parliamentary Association

January 2016

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T: 44-20-7799-1460. F: 44-20-7222-6073.

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