Parliament� National Council of Provinces Chairperson Ms Thandi Modise has concluded her visit to Argentina, where she participated in the Parliamentary Forum and Speakers' Summit of G20 member and guest countries in Buenos Aires.
As they concluded their session in Buenos Aires on Friday, the Heads of Parliaments of G20 countries committed to work together to find and implement lasting solutions to the key challenges facing the world, particularly in the areas of future of work, financing for development, the fight against corruption, empowerment of women and youth, education for the new era of technology and innovation, and renewed commitment to multilateralism.
In a joint statement outlining their resolutions, the Heads of Parliaments expressed their concern about erosion of public trust in institutions of democratic governance and reaffirmed the commitment to continue building effective, representative, inclusive and accessible parliaments, which serve the people and hold governments to account.
In continuing to build such parliaments for effective oversight, the joint statement specifies: We are determined to combat corruption in all its forms, to deny safe haven to corrupt persons and their corruption proceeds, and ensure open, transparent and accountable governance at all levels. To this end, we will support the enactment of legislation, including anti-corruption measures, which will foster renewed confidence of the people in their institutions and generally help advance Goal 16 of the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) for peaceful societies and good governance.
In her address to the meeting earlier, the NCOP Chairperson had stressed that the SDGs would not succeed unless they are driven by effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels. She told her counterparts that corruption was at the heart of our problems in the world today, it destroyed values, families and jobs and retarded growth, thereby costing the world economy billions per annum.
Said Ms Modise: Corruption is not new - it is not unique to any race or continent. It is a global problem affecting countries with varying degrees of severity. Corruption affects the poor disproportionately and creates inequalities that violate what's left of their human rights. It perpetuates discrimination. It contributes immensely to the violation of both civil as well as the economic, social and cultural rights of people.
Noting the the various initiatives that G20 member countries have put forward through their summit meetings since 2008, the Heads of Parliaments have encouraged the G20 leaders to actively pursue their shared objective of strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth, and to find solutions to the common challenges facing the global community, all with a renewed commitment to peace, democracy, prosperity and well-being.
They confirmed that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its accompanying SDGs constitute a roadmap for a fair, equitable and sustainable development of our planet.
We will pursue our efforts to increase the capacity of our respective parliaments to transform these global commitments into national realities. In the process, we will also endeavour to enhance international collaboration and solidarity in achieving these shared objectives, including through active parliamentary engagement in the United Nations High-Level Political Forum, the main international mechanism for monitoring the SDGs, added the Heads of Parliaments in their joint statement.
The Heads of Parliaments of G20 countries also urged the upcoming G20 Leader s Summit, also scheduled in Argentina, to build consensus and inspire further gender-responsive development policies that favor the economic empowerment of women, equal opportunities between men and women in employment, science, technology and education, and the elimination of all forms of gender-based violence.
The series of meetings of Heads of Parliaments of the G20 countries, the first of their kind, were held ahead of the G20 Leaders Summit scheduled for later this month also in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
With the conclusion of her participation at these meetings in Argentina, the NCOP Chairperson has proceeded to Santiago de Chile, in Chile, ahead of her historic address to that country's Parliament in Valparaiso tomorrow in honour of Madiba.
Source: Parliament of the Republic of South Africa