Parliamentary Support Programme

EISA has a pilot programme that aimed at strengthening selected parliaments in Africa and encourage interaction between parliaments and civil society for improved participatory democracy. This programme was part of the larger Africa Democracy Strengthening Programme (funded by DFID) whose major goal is to contribute to the strengthening of democracy and governance on the continent. The Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar and Kenya were selected for the pilot phase of the project which ran from 2007-2008.

About the programme

The legislative support programme covers the following areas:

  • Providing support to parliaments in order to strengthen the capacity of their members of parliament to play their legislative, representation and oversight functions effectively;
  • Assisting parliaments and national civil society organisations to develop effective mechanisms for engagement and greater stakeholder participation in parliamentary processes;
  • Peer learning and sharing of best practices from the African continent

Specific interventions are informed by fact-finding missions undertaken in each country and strategic plans of the respective parliaments.

Policy formulation

EISA hosted a Policy Dialogue on democracy protection institutions in southern Africa on 14 July 2009.

Civil Society and Parliament Engagement in Madagascar

Antananrivo, 1-2 September 2008: The Legislative Support programme held a two day workshop with national civil society organisations (CSOs) in Antananarivo on 1 and 2 September 2008 on the theme: Civil Society - Parliament Relations. 30 national CSO participants are expected to attend the workshop which will provide them with knowledge on how they can contribute to participatory democracy through interacting with their parliament. Participants will go through the following broad topics:

  • Civil society participation and parliament in perspective
  • Influencing policy and law making
  • Understanding advocacy and lobbying
  • Budgeting and finances for civil society

These topics also form the basis of the handbook for CSOs on Civil society - parliament relations developed by EISA.

Antananarivo, 5-6 November 2008: EISA's Legislative Support Programme held a parliamentarian's workshop in Antananarivo on 5 November 2008, as well as a dialogue between parliamentarians and civil society organisations on 6 November. The workshop focused on the core functions of a parliamentarian i.e. oversight, legislation and representation. A policy dialogue brought together the 30 parliamentarians attending the workshop and representatives of national CSOs with a view to putting in place mechanisms for improved Parliament civil society engagement.


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