The Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, Thursday, led a National Assembly delegation to partake in the 137th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly taking place in St. Petersburg, Russia, with the theme: “Promoting Cultural Pluralism and Peace through Inter-faith and Inter-ethnic Dialogue.”
Saraki who is a member of the Governing Board of the IPU, according to a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Sanni Onogu, in Abuja, will present a keynote address to the Assembly, partake in debates and meet with the Chairman of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, Valentina Matvienko.
The President of the Senate is also expected to meet with the Chairman of the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, Vyacheslav Volodin, the President of the House of Councillors of Morocco, Hakim Benchamach and hold an interactive session with Nigerians in Diaspora (NID-Russia) at the sidelines.
Some of the issues slated for consideration during the session include the draft resolutions on the 20th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration on Democracy (by IPU standing Committee on Democracy and Human Rights), the role of the UN General Assembly in International Governance (by IPU standing Committee on United Nations Affairs), briefing on the parliamentary contribution to the 2017 UN Climate Change Conference and a debate on engaging the private sector in implementing the SDGs, especially on renewable energy (by the IPU standing Committee on Sustainable Development, Finance and trade).
Others are the expert hearing on sustaining peace as a vehicle for achieving sustainable development (by IPU standing Committee on Peace and International Security) and the election of a new IPU President (zoned to South America) to replace Mr. S. Chowdhury (Bangladesh), whose term expires at the end of the 201st Session of the Governing Council of the IPU.
Other delegates to the event taking place between 14 – 18 October, 2017, include the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives who is the Deputy Leader of Delegation, Hon. Sulaimon Lasun Yussuff, Senators Bayero Usman Nafada, Kabiru Gaya, Rafiu Ibrahim and Stella Oduah.
Hon. Samuel Ikon, Hon. Raphael Nnanna Igbokwe, Hon. Abubakar Hassan Fulata and Hon. Funke Adedoyin are attending from the Green Chambers while advisers on the team are Sen. Duro Faseyi and Hon. Abdulsamad Dasuki.
Officials of the National Assembly in the team are the Clerk to the National Assembly, Mr. Mohammed Sani-Omolori, Secretary, Finance and Accounts, Alhaji Lasisi Bukoye, Clerk to the Senate, Nelson Ayewoh, Secretary to the National Group, Mrs. Rabi Audu, Special Adviser, General Duties to the CNA, Ms. Iliya Navati, and Clerk Senate Committee on Inter-Parliamentary Affairs, Mr. Okoh Bernard Uzeme.
Also participating in the event are the Chief of Staff to the Deputy Speaker, Hon. Bimbola Daramola and the Special Assistant, Partnerships & NGOs to the President of the Senate, Mr. Innocent Onah, among others
The delegation is expected back in the country next Thursday.