Commonwealth Speakers meet in Seychelles for 24th Conference of Speakers and Presiding Officers of the Commonwealth   

Speakers and Presiding Officers from across the Commonwealth are meeting in Seychelles for the 24th Conference of Speakers and Presiding Officers of the Commonwealth (CSPOC) taking place from 8 to 13 January 2018 which was officially opened by the President of the Republic of Seychelles, Mr Danny Faure.

The Conference, being held in Seychelles for the first time, brings together the Speakers and Presiding Officers of the Parliaments and Legislatures of the Commonwealth. It focuses on the sharing of experiences, collaboration, and partnership across the Parliaments of the Commonwealth. CSPOC was created in 1969 and is a separate independent organisation, although many of its participants are also Members of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association. CSPOC operates on a two-year cycle, holding a conference of the full membership every two years.

In his opening address, President Faure welcomed the delegates to Seychelles and expressed his pride that as a Small Island Developing State, Seychelles is hosting the conference. He highlighted the diversity and fundamental unity of all Commonwealth member states, saying: “We are all committed to the values inscribed in the Commonwealth Charter – democracy, human rights, and the rule of law. We are all dedicated to the development of free and democratic societies, and the promotion of peace and prosperity to improve the lives of our people.”

The President also expanded on the successful cohabitation in Seychelles, saying: “The Seychelles National Assembly as an essential branch of Government has transformed into an exemplary institution in the region. There are vibrant debates of divergent views, but there is also a new working environment; one where there is dialogue and consultation. And most importantly, mutual respect.

Under the leadership of Honourable Speaker Patrick Pillay, our National Assembly has seen greater transparency, openness and accountability. The sittings are broadcast live on both television and radio. Through modern technology, citizens are able to directly contact their respective representatives while the debates are taking place, making use of platforms such as WhatsApp and social media. This is permissible by our Speaker. As for the Executive Branch, members of my Cabinet make themselves available to take private members’ questions from the Leader of the Opposition, and both urgent and 10 days’ notice questions from Members of the National Assembly,”
said the President.

President Faure also thanked the Secretariat of the Seychelles National Assembly for facilitating the organisation of this conference.

To view the full video of the President’s opening address at CSPOC, please select any of the below links to either the State House Official Website video gallery, or subscribe to the Office of the President YouTube Channel, or the State House Facebook page.

State House Official Website Video Gallery - please click here
State House Facebook page - please click here.

For more information about the Conference of Speakers and Presiding Officers of the Commonwealth (CSPOC) please visit

Published Wednesday 10 January 2018.


The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), now in its 107th year with HM The Queen, Head of the Commonwealth as its Patron, exists to develop, promote and support Commonwealth Parliamentarians and parliamentary staff to identify benchmarks of good governance and to implement the enduring values of the Commonwealth. The CPA is an international community of Commonwealth Parliaments and Legislatures working together to deepen the Commonwealth’s commitment to the highest standards of democratic governance. 

The CPA represents more than 180 Parliaments and Legislatures in 52 Commonwealth countries and its network extends to over 17,000 Parliamentarians and Parliamentary staff. The CPA is the only Commonwealth organisation to represent national, state, provincial and territorial Parliaments and Legislatures. There are nine Regions of the CPA: Africa; Asia; Australia; British Islands and Mediterranean; Canada; Caribbean, Americas and Atlantic; India; Pacific; South-East Asia. Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) in Branches and Regions promote gender participation in Parliaments and CPA Small Branches represent more than 30 jurisdictions with populations of up to 500,000 people. 

Parliaments, their Members and officials learn from each other through CPA activities including: Annual Commonwealth Parliamentary Conferences and CPA Regional Conferences; a wide range of Parliamentary strengthening and Public Outreach Programmes; Interparliamentary visits; Parliamentary Seminars and Workshops; and Communications and Publications including The Parliamentarian, the Journal of Commonwealth Parliaments. 

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