The Plenary Assembly may, for the purpose of performing its functions establish Standing Committees in line with Article 14 of the Constitution. Each Member Parliament shall be represented in each of the Standing Committees.
The following Standing Committees are established:
- Gender Equality, Women Advancement and Youth Development;
- Trade, Industry, Finance and Infrastructure;
- Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resources;
- Democratisation, Governance and Human Rights; and
- Human and Social Development and Special Programmes.
For the purposes of balancing gender, political affiliation and geographical spread in the membership and leadership of Standing Committees, the Plenary may mandate the Secretary General, subject to the approval of the Executive Committee, to reallocate Parliamentarians to Standing Committees.
As far as it is practically possible, gender considerations shall be taken into account when deciding Chairpersonship of Committees. Where the Chairperson of a Committee is a woman, the Vice- Chairperson shall be a man and vice versa.
Election of Chairpersons and ViceChairpersons of Standing Committees
- Each Committee shall elect a Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson
- The Chairperson of a Standing Committee shall preside over all meetings of the Committee. In his or her absence, the Vice-Chairperson shall assume those duties and in the absence of the Vice-Chairperson, a Member designated by the Committee shall preside over the Committee on an interim basis.
The quorum of each Standing Committee shall be a simple majority of its Members.
- A Standing Committee shall strive to reach decisions by consensus.
- Where a Standing Committee fails to reach consensus, voting shall be by secret ballot.
- The Chairperson shall have a casting vote in the event of a tie.
Specific Mandate of Standing Committees
To deal with issues of gender equality, women advancement and empowerment as well as youth development and children.
To deal with all matters related to economic cooperation, industry and trade, mining, finance and investment and regional integration.
To deal with matters related to agriculture, fisheries, forestry and wildlife, water and environment, energy, transport, tourism, ICTs, meteorology, food security and natural resources.
To deal with democratisation and governance issues including open, transparent and accountable governance, democracy, political participation including elections, security, peace and stability on the basis of collective responsibility, rule of law, human rights, and conflict resolution
To deal with human and social development issues pertaining to health and combating illicit drug trafficking, HIV/AIDS, human resource development, education, professional training, employment and labour, culture and sport, science and technology and humanitarian issues as well as and other issues to be determined accordingly.