The Rt.Hon. Sir Alan Haselhurst MP was guest speaker at the Isle of Man Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) dinner on Tuesday, March 13.
Addressing the audience of present and former CPA members at the Claremont Hotel, Douglas, Sir Alan, chairperson of the CPA international executive committee and Conservative MP for Saffron Walden, reaffirmed that the CPA was ‘open for business’ and spoke of the importance of redefining the association’s status.
Sir Alan explained that central to CPA strategy was the need ‘to bring parliamentarians together’, adding ‘The clue’s in the name.’ He acknowledged there were ‘special issues’ affecting small island states, remarking that the CPA enabled ‘the small to mix with the mighty and learn from each other’ and, as a recent example of the Isle of Man’s important contribution to the CPA, cited the valuable contribution made by the President of Tynwald, the Hon Clare Christian MLC, in her capacity as the British Islands and Mediterranean Region (BIMR) CPA working party representative.
Sir Alan said he hoped to expand the scope and reach of seminars and workshops organised by the CPA and stressed the importance of ‘constantly looking at what others [in the Commonwealth] are doing’ in a move to adopt a more global perspective.
During his 24-hour visit, his first to the Island, Sir Alan spent time at the Legislative Buildings where he was given a tour of Tynwald Court and the Legislative Council chambers conducted by Madam President and of the House of Keys led by the Speaker, the Hon Steve Rodan SHK, during which the Tynwald voice recognition transcription technology was demonstrated. Sir Alan also met with the executive committee of the Isle of Man branch of the CPA and visited Tynwald Hill and the Royal Chapel at St John’s.
CPA Isle of Man branch chairman Mr Juan Watterson MHK said: ‘Sir Alan’s speech illustrated his deep commitment to strengthening the CPA’s global reach, redefining its role for the 21st century and forming lasting alliances. An ardent proponent of strength through unity Sir Alan brings strong leadership and wise counsel to the CPA and we were honoured to welcome him to the Isle of Man.’
Pictured: The Rt. Hon. Sir Alan Haselhurst MP with the President of Tynwald, the Hon Clare Christian MLC and the Speaker of the House of Keys, Steve Rodan SHK.
For further information contact:
Deputy Clerk of Tynwald
Legislative Buildings, Douglas, IM1 3PW
Tel: 01624 686303