University students from Côte d'Ivoire visit the Pan-African Parliament

The Pan African Parliament (PAP) has described the engagement it had with the students from Côte d'Ivoire’s Clairefontaine International University (UIC) under a Parliamentary Student Visitors’ Programme as a “progressive experience.”

The week-long visit coincided with the Sittings of the PAP Permanent Committees in Midrand.

The Acting Clerk of Parliament Mr. Gali Massa HAROU expressed his delight at the progress achieved in empowerment of African students through the PAP’s Parliamentary Engagement Initiative. He commended the positive feedback by the University representatives.

“These students did not know about the existence of the PAP, but now they have something to talk about when they return home. They now know how we conduct our business as a continental legislative body. This is a progressive step for Africa; once we empower the young people, the future is bright for our continent,” said Mr. Harou.

Kouame ARIELLE, a Bachelor of Arts (Political Science) Degree student at UIC expressed appreciated the opportunity to participate in the programme.

“I am very pleased to have experienced how Africa operates its Parliament. I did not know about the continental parliament but now it is my duty to publicise it. I also realized that Members of Parliament (MPs) who sit in various Committees take the issues that affect women and youth seriously. I am really excited to have been part of this initiative,” she added.

The Dean of Faculties at UIC, Christian SEYA said: “We are thrilled to be here. We were invited by the PAP to attend the 2020 Plenary Committee Sessions. We are very impressed by the great honour and respect the MPs have been giving us. We are also challenged by the way the students enjoyed the sessions.”

The Dean believes that through this experience, students will be more inclined to highlighting PAP’s role in Africa’s integration. “In Africa, we barely expose youth and students to decision making level events. This 2020 PAP visit has taught us that there is will and we are gratefulness to the PAP and partners for designing the innovative Student Visitors’ Participation Programme,” he said.

As part of the visit, the students attended various meetings and workshops of the March Sittings of the PAP Permanent Committees. The visitors were also briefed about the mandate, role and historical background of the continental Parliament.

UIC is located in Abidjan, the economic capital of Côte d'Ivoire and trains in various fields including Economics, Management, English, Communication and Law.