Suva, Fiji – When the new Fijian Parliament opens next week after a lapse of over eight years, Members of Parliament (MPs) and Parliament Secretariat staff will get to use some of the latest technology, making it one of the most modern parliaments in the region.
ICT equipment worth over US$893,000 (FJD$1.6m), was handed over today by Osnat Lubrani, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Resident Representative to Viniana Namosimalua, Secretary General to the Fijian Parliament. Equipment included a delegate conferencing system that will enable the Members of Parliament (MPs) to vote electronically, portable delegate conferencing system to enhance the effectiveness of the work of the various Committees in engaging with citizens during public consultation process, the latest Hansard recording software and hardware that will ensure accurate record of the proceedings in Parliament, iPads to access documents related to a day sitting and other parliamentary papers online, desktops and laptops for Parliament Secretariat staff.
Expressing her appreciation for the support to the Fijian Parliament, Ms Namosimalua said “I’m certain the Parliamentarians and staff, will put to good use the technology to effectively fulfil their functions and roles.”
“Through our Parliament project, UNDP is delighted to have been able to play a role in providing assistance to the reestablishment of the Parliament of Fiji,” said Ms. Lubrani when presenting the equipment. She added the support would not have been made possible without the generous funding from European Union, and Governments of New Zealand, Japan and Australia.
Also at the handover were Mark Ramsden, Acting Head of Mission, New Zealand High Commission; Ambassador Andrew Jacobs, Delegation of the European Union for the Pacific; Mr Kazuo Tsukada, Embassy of Japan, and Karinda D'aloisio, Deputy High Commissioner, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Australian High Commission.
Since January 2014, UNDP has been working to provide support to Parliament of Fiji in a number of areas: undertake an assessment of the needs of the new Parliament building and outlining the steps that need to be taken to make the building ready for the first sitting of Parliament,the provision of technical assistance for the development of revised Parliament Standing Orders and laws relevant to the functioning of Parliament; the development of training programme and provision of training for parliament secretariat staff and MPs.
UNDP’s commitment to working with the Fijian Parliament is long-term with the aim of providing ongoing and continuing support as the new Parliament undertakes the important work of legislative, oversight and representation functions.
UNDP: Sheryl Ho, tel: +679 8065-439, 3300-399; email: email@example.com
Parliament of Fiji: Viniana Namosimalua, tel: 9908-914; email: firstname.lastname@example.org