The parliament, as one of the institutions of democracy, is unique. For democracy to take root, citizens need ways to make their voices heard and incorporated into policy decisions. Parliaments provide such ways to articulate popular will. They serve as the peoples’ branch of government alongside the executive and the judicial branches as necessary institutions for democratic good governance. Parliaments in Africa face enormous capacity challenges, especially in countries where a strong executive or the military has dominated the political system. In such circumstances, the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) has been a leader in developing strategies and tools to assist parliaments effectively perform their fundamental tasks of representation, lawmaking, and oversight. Consequently, the study focuses on an overview of the IPU experience in parliamentary strengthening in Africa with particular emphasis on Nigeria. It describes what the IPU has done and is doing to promote responsive and effective parliaments in Africa and highlights ways in which improved parliamentary performance has strengthened democracy in Africa. Our findings revealed that the effort of the IPU at strengthening parliaments in Africa include building support for democratic reforms within Parliaments; improving the capacity of Members of Parliaments in lawmaking; enhancing legislative oversight of the executive branch, ensuring sound management and improving infrastructure at development. The study further reveals that the strategies adopted by the IPU included study tours, conferences and workshops to expose Members of Parliaments to the wealth of experience existing in long established democracies. Similarly, the IPU conducts conference on comparative parliamentary practice and procedure to expose parliamentarians in Africa Parliaments to lessons and experiences from other Parliaments. Finally, the study revealed that the IPU has sponsored series of workshops to build support for reform and modernisation of parliaments, strengthening capacity of legislators for effective representation, skills acquisition in the lawmaking process and assisting in handling substantive issues that parliaments need to address such as constitutional development, rule of law, federalism, accountability, corruption, resource control and good governance. It was also discovered in the course of the study that these programmes have broaden the horizon of parliamentarians in handling their day-to-day duties with a deeper understanding of their role in a democratic system.
AfroAsia, R (2021). THE ROLE OF THE INTER-PARLIAMENTARY UNION IN STRENGTHENING PARLIAMENTS IN AFRICA. Afribary.com: Retrieved April 17, 2021, from https://afribary.com/works/the-role-of-the-inter-parliamentary-union-in-strengthening-parliaments-in-africa
Research, AfroAsia. "THE ROLE OF THE INTER-PARLIAMENTARY UNION IN STRENGTHENING PARLIAMENTS IN AFRICA" Afribary.com. Afribary.com, 06 Apr. 2021, https://afribary.com/works/the-role-of-the-inter-parliamentary-union-in-strengthening-parliaments-in-africa . Accessed 17 Apr. 2021.
Research, AfroAsia. "THE ROLE OF THE INTER-PARLIAMENTARY UNION IN STRENGTHENING PARLIAMENTS IN AFRICA". Afribary.com, Afribary.com, 06 Apr. 2021. Web. 17 Apr. 2021. < https://afribary.com/works/the-role-of-the-inter-parliamentary-union-in-strengthening-parliaments-in-africa >.
Research, AfroAsia. "THE ROLE OF THE INTER-PARLIAMENTARY UNION IN STRENGTHENING PARLIAMENTS IN AFRICA" Afribary.com (2021). Accessed April 17, 2021. https://afribary.com/works/the-role-of-the-inter-parliamentary-union-in-strengthening-parliaments-in-africa