A very good morning to you all.
Firstly, let me congratulate each and every one of you Elected Members for a successful election into the Fijian Parliament.
As you all know, you are now the representatives of all Fijians irrespective of which party you belong to. The hard work of heeding the call of duty to carry out your Parliamentary and constitutional duties has already began.
And I wish you all the best in the new Parliamentary term – I am sure the whole country is looking forward to your continuing service in Parliament.
It pleases me to convey a very special welcome to all elected members who will be entering Parliament for the first time. It is pleasing to see many new and young Fijians who have committed themselves to servicing the august House.
This one-day induction workshop is very important for all elected members as a preparatory requirement before Parliament sits for the first time.
Please note that another week-long more intensive induction programme is scheduled in January and you will be duly notified ahead of time.
Further details and queries about Parliamentary processes and procedures as provided for under the Standing Orders and other documents will be covered and answered at that workshop.
Today, the secretariat team will focus mostly on the processes and procedures to be undertaken at the first meeting and swearing-in, and some important administrative and workplace matters that requires your attention. And of course some of the basic information about Parliament and its role for our incoming new Members.
Take this induction as just like any induction when you first enter a workplace or going to a new job.
The Secretary-General and her hard working team are here today and onwards to provide you with guidance, advance and assistance as you settle into your role as a Member of Parliament.
But as I mentioned earlier, the primary aim of this one-day induction is to prepare for the swearing-in ceremony and other initial processes that we need to undertake before Parliament starts its work in earnest.
I would like to emphasise that such a workshop as this and training for Members of Parliament whether you are a new or old Member is an ongoing process. MPs training and capacity-building is firmly mainstreamed into the work of Parliament and especially in the workplans of the Secretariat.
Furthermore, in partnership with our development partners like the UNDP, our partner Parliaments in Australia, New Zealand and beyond, our inter-parliamentary forums like the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), we provide numerous opportunities for ongoing capacity-building and awareness with the aim of ensuring that Members undertake their Parliamentary functions effectively and efficiently.
At this juncture, I would also like to acknowledge the ongoing support of the UNDP Fiji Parliament Support Programme which is being kindly funded by the Governments of Australia, New Zealand and Japan.
I sincerely hope you find today’s induction useful and I look forward to your earnest participation.