‘Parliamentary democracy is cruel’

National, Normal

The National, Friday July 6th, 2012

PARLIAMENTARY democracy in the country is unsympathetic to fundamental issues such as political representation for women, a senior research fellow at the National Research Institute says.
At the launch of a programme to strengthen parliamentary democracy, Dr Ray Anere said the PNG parliament should be a symbol of hope and inspiration. But it is muddled with politics and the dynamics of power to the point that it fails to inspire the public and respective communities.
Anere said parliament had failed to pass a law enabling 22 reserved seats for women and that had left women to contest the regional and open seats among men in this election.
As a result, by international standards, the PNG parliament is one of the least inclusive in terms of women’s representation with other Pacific Island countries.
“Is there a need to conduct research on the PNG parliament and parliamentary processes? The simple answer is yes,” he said.
He is the leader of the parliamentary democracy programme.
Anere said research on the way parliament conducted its business of law making and on the effectiveness of its committees was needed.
It would help identify areas where reforms or improvements could be undertaken to enhance its effectiveness as a law-making institution and enhance its relevance to the development needs and peoples aspirations.