Egyptian speaker of parliament in Johannesburg for African Parliament session

Egypt’s speaker of parliament Ali Abdel-Al arrived in the South African capital of Johannesburg Monday for a multi-day visit to attend meetings of the current session of the Pan-African Parliament.

The top Egyptian parliamentarian, who left Cairo late Sunday, is due to deliver a speech during the inaugural meeting of the chamber’s second ordinary session, which runs from 3 May until 13 May.

Abdel- Al, accompanied by Egyptian parliamentary delegates, will attend the parliament’s meetings until 6 May, Egypt’s state news agency MENA reported.

During his stay, Abdel-Al is planned to hold talks with South African President Jacob Zuma  to discuss “bilateral as well as and regional and international issues of mutual interest,” MENA added.

The Pan-African Parliament (PAP) is the  legislative organ of the African Union, a union of 54 member countries throughout the African continent.

Egypt’s participation in the May session marks the resumption of its activities in the PAP after a three-year lapse.

Egypt has been without a parliament since 2012, effectively barring it from participation in the PAP. A new lower house was elected in January.

As with other member states, Egypt is represented in the PAP by five parliamentarians.

Cairo was suspended from all African Union activities in mid-2013 following the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, but was reinstated as a member a year later.

source:Ahram Online