Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
As of 1989, the CPA acknowledges as Patron – the Head of the Commonwealth, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II – and as Vice-Patron, by rotation Heads of State or Heads of Government of the Commonwealth national government hosting its upcoming annual Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference. The Association's supreme authority is the General Assembly, constituted by delegates to the annual Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference. The business and activities of the CPA are managed by an Executive Committee, which reports to the General Assembly. The CPA's funds are derived from membership fees paid by its branches, as well as from two trust funds and benefactors.
The official publication of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association is The Parliamentarian, the Journal of Commonwealth Parliaments which was first published in 1919. The organisation administers the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP), a network across the Commonwealth which promotes greater representation for women in Parliament, the CPA Small Branches network, representing parliaments and legislatures with populations below 500,000 people, and the Commonwealth Youth Parliament, an annual gathering of young people hosted by a Commonwealth Parliament.
The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) currently has approximately 180 branches and is divided into nine regions – Africa; Asia; Australia; British Islands and Mediterranean; Canada; Caribbean, Americas and Atlantic; India; Pacific, and South-East Asia. The CPA Headquarters Secretariat is based in London.
The CPA was founded as the Empire Parliamentary Association in 1911, with its first branches being Australia, Canada, Newfoundland, New Zealand, South Africa and the United Kingdom, the latter branch administering the Association as a whole. In 1948 the Association changed its name to the current Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, and invited all branches to participate in the organisation's administration.
The current Chair of the CPA Executive Committee is Hon. Emilia Lifaka MP, Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly of Cameroon. Previous Chairpersons have included Hon. Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, Speaker of Jatiyo Sangsad Bhaban of Bangladesh (2014–2017), who succeeded Rt Hon. Sir Alan Haselhurst MP (2011–2014), formerly Chairman of Ways and Means of the UK Parliament.
The current Chairperson for Small Branches is Hon. Angelo Farrugia, MP, Speaker of the House of Representatives of Malta in the Parliament of Malta. The Small Branches Chairperson is a new Officer position within the CPA from December 2016.
The CPA's 7th Secretary-General is Mr Akbar Khan.
Previous Secretaries-General have been: Dr. William F. Shija, former Minister Tanzania Parliament (2007–2014); Hon. Denis Marshall, former Minister New Zealand Parliament (2002–2006); Hon. Arthur Donahoe, former Speaker Nova Scotia House of Assembly (1993–2001); Hon. Dr. David Tonkin, former Premier South Australia (1986–1992); Sir Robin Vandervelt from South Africa (1961–1985); Sir Howard d’Egville (1949–1960).
- The CPA Secretariat Headquarters CPA HQ – you will also find links to The Parliamentarian, the Journal of Commonwealth Parliaments, published by the CPA. Link to The Parliamentarian
- The Africa Region of the CPA CPA Africa
- The British Islands and Mediterranean Region and UK Branch of the CPA is based in Westminster CPA UK
- The Canadian Region of the CPA CPA Canada
- The Australia Region of the CPA CPA Australia
- The Caribbean, Americas and Atlantic Region of the CPA CPA CAA
- American Institute of Parliamentarians – similar association for United States.