Parliamentarians challenged to be transparent and accountable to the citizenry

By Peter Chivhima

Parliamentarians have been implored to be transparent and accountable to the citizenry, with the issue taking centre stage at the African Network of Parliament Conference in Harare this Monday.

In an interview with the ZBC News on the sidelines of the conference, Clerk of Parliament Mr Kennedy Chokuda highlighted the significance of conference in parliament’s oversight role.

“This gathering is also a platform for knowledge and experience sharing on good practices, concepts, challenges and opportunities related to the design, establishment, and operation of PBOs in Africa. I implore you to continuously develop yourselves. Concomitantly, with the ever-evolving world, we need budget officers with a plethora or relevant and up to date skills to enhance parliamentary oversight. I call upon you to collaborate your diverse skills and widen the areas of focus as a way of ensuring through scrutiny and attention to detail. Parliamentarians also need to be transparent and accountable to the citizenry,” he said.

Participants spoke on the need to bridge the gap between the grassroots and the executive for the development of the continent.

“We need to support our Parliaments with technical expertise so that we can deliver to the people we represent and how we transform the continent,” Dumisani Janchis, Head of South African Parliamentary Budget Office.

Mahommed Nyagsi, Head of African Parliamentary Budget of Ghana noted, “Parliamentarians and executive should work together for the better of citizenry. We as Parliamentarians we need to support our Parliaments to increase its fiscus. So, this calls us to be accountable to the citizenry.”

The ANPBO is an African subgrouping of the global network of Parliamentary Budget Offices that brings together PBOs from across the globe and experts to share ideas.