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CPA Activities: The Canadian SceneCPA Activities: The Canadian Scene

28th Canadian Regional Parliamentary Seminar 

The 28th Annual CPA seminar was held in Victoria, British Columbia from October 12-14, 2006.  The host for the session was Bill Barisoff, Speaker of the British Columbia Legislative Assembly.  Approximately 40 delegates from all Canadian provinces and territories except Yukon attended the seminar which took place in the Chamber of the Legislative Assembly. 

The first session, chaired by David Wilson of Nova Scotia, featured a presentation on the Quebec National Assembly's Public Communication Plan.  The presenters were Vincent Auclair and Alexandre Bourdeau of Quebec. 

The second session was chaired by Newfoundland and Labrador Speaker Harvey Hodder and featured a presentation on “Sharing the Wealth:  The Function of Budget Surpluses” by Speaker Ken Kowalski of Alberta. 

A session on “Electoral Reform” was chaired by Prince Edward Island Speaker Greg Deighan and featured a presentation by Linda Johnston, Deputy Chief Electoral Officer of British Columbia.  There was also a session on “The Government as Foster Parent:  What is Going Right, What is going Wrong” which was chaired by Greg Brkich of Saskatchewan. It consisted of a presentation by Mark Sieben, Assistant Deputy Minister for Policy and Legislation and Director of Child Welfare in the Ministry of Children and Family Development. 

The final session took place at Canadian Maritime Forces Base Esquimault.  It consisted of a briefing by Bruce Donaldson, Commander of the Canadian Fleet, Pacific. This was followed by a tour of HMCS Regina with Commander Yvan Couture

During the seminar delegates were invited to a reception, dinner and tour of Anne Hathaway House and Rosemeade Gardens as well as an informal dinner and entertainment at the Irish Times Pub. 

5th Canadian Parliamentary Seminar 

The Canadian Branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association hosted the 5th Seminar on “Strengthening Democracy and the Role of Parliamentarians” in Ottawa from October 22-28, 2006. 

Some 20 delegates from the various Regions of the Commonwealth were welcomed by Russ Hiebert, MP, Chair of the Canadian Branch.  The following sessions were held during the seminar. 

Overview of the Role and Operation of the Canadian Parliament 

  • Russ Hiebert MP, Chair 
  • Audrey O'Brien, Clerk of the House of Commons 
  • Charles Robert,  Principal Clerk, Chamber Operations, the Senate 

The Commonwealth and the Role of the CPA 

  • Russ Hiebert MP Chair 
  • Joe Omorodion, CPA Headquarters, London, U.K. 

The Role of the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) 

  • Maria Minna MP, Chair 

The Canadian Political Scene 

  • Marilyn Brick MLA, (Manitoba) Chair 
  • Scott Reid MP, Deputy Government House Leader 

Getting There:  Political Recruiting and Women in the Political Process 

  • Helena Dalli, MP (Malta) Chair 
  • Libby Davies, MP, House Leader, NDP; 
  • Raylene Lang-Dion, Chair, Equal Voice Canada 

The Parliamentary Presence of Political Parties:  The Role of Party Caucuses 

  • Wong Nai Chee, MP, (Malaysia)  Chair 
  • Senator Terry Stratton Chief Government Whip in the Senate; 
  • Karen Redman, MP, Whip, Official Opposition, House of Commons 
  • Rahim Jaffer, MP, Chair, National Caucus, Conservative Party 

Parliament and Civil Society 

  • Dayasiri Jayasekera, MP (Sri Lanka) Chair 
  • Senator Anne Cools 
  • Mary Pat MacKinnon, Research Director, Canadian Policy Research Network (CPRN) 

How an MP's Office Works 

  • Lim Bee Kau, MP (Malaysia) Chair 
  • Nicole Demers, MP 
  • Nancy Karatek-Lindell, MP 

Dealing with the Competition:  Have the Media Taken Over the Representational Job of Parliamentarians? 

  • Michale Olescamp, MLA (New Brunswick) Chair 
  • Senator Jim Munson 

Parliamentary Committees:  What Works and What Doesn't 

  • James Burke, MLA (Northern Territory, Australia), Chair 
  • John Williams, MP 
  • John Maloney, MP 

Engaging Citizens:  Resources and Tools 

  • Tom Nevakshonoff, MLA (Manitoba) Chair 
  • Joseph Peters, Ascentum 

Connecting with Constituents:  Representing Pluralistic Constituencies 

  • John Joswash, MP (Malawi) Chair 
  • Derek Lee, MP 

Influencing Governments and Regulating Influence:  Parliament and Lobbyists 

  • Jamahl Simmons, MP (Bermuda) Chair 
  • James Rajotte, MP 
  • Sean Moore, Public Policy Advisor, Gowling, Lafleur, Henderson, LLP. 

The final session was chaired by Mzwandile Manjiya, MLA (Western Cape, South Africa) and was devoted to a discussion of topics suggested by the delegates. The topics included:  How can we engage youth in politics in the 21st Century?, The Westminster System – Parliamentary autonomy – a myth?, and E-Voting – A future Possibility. 

During the week delegates were invited to a dinner hosted by Speaker Peter Milliken and a lunch by Senate Speaker Noel Kinsella.  They also had a tour of the Museum of Civilisation. 

Canadian Parliamentary Review Cover
Vol 29 no 4

Last Updated: 2020-09-14