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Chief Fortune Charumbira elected Vice President of PAP

Honourable Senator Chief Fortune Charumbira has been elected Vice President of the Pan-African Parliament (PAP) representing Southern Africa.
“The road has been long. I won against Hon  Professor Lungwangwa who is the former Minister of Higher Education in Zambia in October last year. In May this year, I won against Dr. Penyo Butale of Botswana. The last round was today. In order to proceed to the last round, the last round requires two candidates one male and one female to contest. On Monday 22 October elections were held to elect one male and one female candidate to contest today today 25 October to elect a Vice President,” Chief Charumbira said.
For the male side Chief Charumbira was nominated unopposed having beaten Hon Professor Lungwangwa and Hon. Dr. Butale. For the female candidate Hon. Alice Ngoma beat Hon. Nthloi Motsamai former Speaker of the Parliament of Lesotho.
However, Chief Charumbira went into the elections today as the sole candidate after Hon. Alice Ngoma of Malawi withdrew her candidature in the last minute. Chief Charumbira was subsequently elected with 114 out of 157 ballots cast. 25 ballots were blank and 18 ballots spoiled.
Chief Charumbira promised to work with the Bureau of the Pan-African Parliament as a team to eliminate regionalism and enhance the unity of Parliament.
“I stand here to thank you for the confidence that I can make a contribution to the Pan-African Parliament by seating on the Bureau of PAP,” Chief Charumbira said in his acceptance speech.

He joins a top brass team made up of Hon. Roger Nkodo Dang of Cameroon (Central Africa), Hon. Stephen Julius Masele of Tanzania (East Africa), Hon. Haïdara Aichata Cissé of Mali (West Africa) and Hon. Bouras Djamal of Algeria (North Afica) respectively President, first, second third vice-presidents.

The fourth vice-presidency spot had remained vacant since May 2018 after the Southern African Region failed to nominate a candidate to this position during the election of the 5th  Bureau of the continental Parliament. In line with rules of procedure, fresh elections were scheduled to be called in order to fill the vacancy.

Addressing members of the PAP upon taking his oath of office, Hon. Chief Fortune Charumbira pledged to be a team player in his bid to help the Bureau to formulate policies that will advance the mandate of the PAP.

“My focus will be on working hand in hand with the other Bureau members to come up with ways to make a difference in the lives of our people as per the mission of this institution. I am grateful to the members of the PAP for the confidence shown in me through what has been a free, fair and transparent process. I hope to count on everyone as we aim to surmount the difficult task of making the PAP relevant to the people ,” says Hon. Charumbira.

Welcoming Hon. Charumbira to the Bureau, Hon. Roger Nkodo Dang, President of the PAP, urged all members to put their differences aside and work towards the same goal.

“The election of Hon. Charumbira signals the end of the election process. The Bureau is now complete and it is time to get on with the work as a united front. The election is behind so let’s honour our commitment to the continent.” says Hon.Dang.

Hon. Charumbira has been a member of the PAP for over 14 years and he was previously Chairperson of the Committee on Audit and Public Accounts (CAPA).

The Pan African Pan African Parliament is an organ of the African Union whose objectives are to:
  • Facilitate the effective implementation of the policies and objectives of the OAU/AEC and, ultimately, of the African Union;
  • Promote the principles of human rights and democracy in Africa;
  • Encourage good governance, transparency and accountability in Member States;
  • Familiarise the peoples of Africa with the objectives and policies aimed at integrating the African continent within the framework of the establishment of the African Union;
  • Promote peace, security and stability;
  • Contribute to a more prosperous future for the people of Africa by promoting collective self-reliance and economic recovery;
  • Facilitate cooperation and development in Africa
  • Strengthen Continental solidarity and build a sense of common destiny among the peoples of Africa;
  • Facilitate cooperation among Regional Economic Communities and their Parliamentary fora.
It’s seat is in SA but can meet in any country on the African Continent. It is composed of a total of 270 MPs, that is five MPs from each of the 54 Member State.
The President and 4 Vice Presidents constitute the Bureau which is the top governing body of the Pan African. The Bureau members administer the PAP and preside over the Parliamentary Sessions. The PAP makes recommendations on matters affecting the African  Continent and passes Model By-Laws for adoption by the Assembly of  Heads of States of Africa when they meet.

About the author

Byron Adonis Mutingwende