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The composition, aims, and functions of the Pan-African Parliament of the African Union



THE PAN-AFRICAN PARLIAMENT
Introduction
The Pan-African Parliament is an organ of the African Union. It is provided for by the Treaty establishing the African Economic Community. Currently, members of the Pan-African parliament are appointed by National Parliaments though they are supposed to be elected by universal adult suffrage. 

It is hoped that when uniform electoral laws are established by member states then the election would be used. Each member-state is entitled to elect five (5) members to the Parliament.

Currently, the Pan-African Parliament currently exists only in a consultative capacity, however, in the long term; however, the PAP will constitute the legislative organ of the AU.

COMPOSITION
Each Member State is represented in the Pan-African Parliament by five (5) members, at least one of whom must be a woman.

The representation of each Member State must reflect the diversity of political opinions in each National Parliament or other deliberative organ.

Election,
The Pan-African Parliamentarians are elected or designated by the respective National Parliaments or any other deliberative organs of the Member States, from among their member

Tenure
The term of a Member of the Pan-African Parliament shall run concurrent with his or her term in the National Parliament or other deliberative organ.

Vacancies
For the seat of a Member of the Pan-African Parliament to become vacant he/ she must             
(a) have died;
(b) have resigned in writing to the President
(c) have been unable to perform his/ her functions for reasons of physical or mental incapacity,
(d) have been removed on grounds of misconduct,
(e) have ceased to be a Member of the National Parliament or other deliberative organ;
(f) have been recalled by the National Parliament.

OBJECTIVES OF THE PAN-AFRICAN PARLIAMENT
Facilitation
It is a function of the Pan-African Parliament to facilitate the effective implementation of the policies and objectives of the African Union.

Promotion of Human Rights
Another function of the Pan-African Parliament is to promote the principles of human rights and democracy in Africa.

Good Governance
The Pan-African Parliament functions to encourage good governance, transparency and accountability in member states.

Education of citizens of member states
It educates the peoples of Africa about the objectives and policies of the African Union with the aim of integrating the African continent within the framework of the establishment of the African Union.

Promote Peace
Another duty of the Pan-African Parliament is to promote peace, security and stability within the continent, especially, among member states.

Future Prosperity
It is the function of the Pan-African Parliament to contribute to the creation of a more prosperous future for the peoples of Africa by promoting collective self- reliance and economic recovery.

Facilitate Development
The Pan-African Parliament facilitates co-operation and development in Africa.

Continental Solidarity
It strengthens continental solidarity and builds a sense of common destiny among the peoples of
Africa.

Facilitate Co-operation
It facilitates co-operation among Regional Economic Communities and their Parliamentary forum.

FUNCTIONS AND POWERS OF THE PAN-AFRICAN PARLIAMENT
Discusses Budget
One of the functions of the Pan-African Parliament is to discuss the budget of the Union and make recommendations before approval is given by the Assembly.

Harmonization
One of the functions of the Parliament is to work towards the harmonization and co-ordination of the laws of Member States.

Recommendations
The Parliament also functions to make recommendations that are aimed at contributing to the attainment of the objectives of the African Union and draw attention to the challenges facing the integration process in Africa and the strategies for dealing with them.

Attendance of Sessions
The Parliament can request officials of the AU/AEC to attend its sessions produce documents or assist in the discharge of its duties.

Promote Programmes
The Parliament has the power to promote the programmes and objectives of the African Union, in the constituencies of Member States.

Co-ordination and harmonization
The Parliament promotes the co-ordination and harmonization of policies, measures, programmes and activities of the Regional Economic Communities and the Parliamentary forum for Africa.

Adoption of Rules and Procedure
The Parliament may adopt its Rules of Procedure, elects its own President and propose to the Council and the Assembly the size and nature of the support staff of the Pan-African Parliament.

SAMPLE QUESTION
1.  Write an essay of any of the following
     a. The Assembly
     b. The Executive Council
     c. The Pan-African Parliament

2. a. Describe the composition of the Pan-African parliament.
    b. Highlight five objectives of the Pan-African parliament

3. a. State three objectives of the Pan-African Parliament.
    b. Highlight five functions of the Pan-African Parliament.

4. Highlight six functions of the Pan-African Parliament.

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