The Office of the Clerk of the Legislative Assembly hosted its 4th Parliamentary Youth Programme to coincide with the Parliament Sitting on the 17th and 18th of March 2020. In his opening remarks to officially open the Parliamentary Youth Programme 2020, the Deputy Speaker, Afioga Nafoitoa Talaimanu Keti, stressed the importance for youth participants to ‘make the most of opportunities’, especially the opportunity to experience and learn about their Parliament. The Deputy Speaker acknowledged the crucial role that the youth play in the development of the country and the Parliamentary Youth Programme 2020 is in response to the recognition of the need for institutions like Parliament to foster and strengthen relationships with the youth as they are the very near leaders of the country.
The participants had the opportunity to observe Parliamentary Sitting, a first for the majority of them, and were fortunate to have been addressed by the Prime Minister, Hon. Tuilaepa Dr. Sailele Malielegaoi, during Parliament morning recess.
The highlight of the two-day program was the implementation of the ‘Mock Parliament’ by the participants, an activity that enabled youth participants to walk in the shoes of a Member of Parliament and to not only experience how it is like during a Parliamentary sitting but to also get a sense of the importance of the role and responsibilities of being a Member of Parliament.