The COVID-19 pandemic has left many governments feeling torn between focusing on addressing the virus and ensuring a recovery on the one hand and addressing the climate emergency on the other. WFD believes that, if they are transparent and inclusive, democracies can do both. The Indonesian Parliament’s Inter-Parliamentary Cooperation Bureau (BKSAP) list climate change as […]
Westminster Foundation for Democracy is supporting democratic stability in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in the Muslim Mindanao (BARMM or the Bangsamoro). The Bangsamoro is an autonomous region in the Southern Philippines and the centrepiece of a long-running peace process in which the UK Government played an important support role.
The Bangsamoro is a fledgling autonomous region in the Southern Philippines. The region was one year into a complex political transition period, following decades of conflict, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. The Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) must navigate a range of governance issues to enable the new autonomous region transition into a working democratic entity. These include:
- Creating a devolved parliamentary system of government within a unitary, presidential state;
- Crafting a mixed electoral system that provides for a fairer playing field and represents diverse group interests;
- Ensuring the new politics of the region includes everyone;
- Ensuring that Bangsamoro women and other minority groups have political voice and meaningful representation.
The Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) will serve as an interim government in BARMM until the first elections take place in 2022. Until then, the BTA’s task is to put in place the Bangsamoro Organic Law, the constitutional basis of the Bangsamoro and to build the required institutional architecture and structures for effective and inclusive governance in the Bangsamoro.
WFD is leading a programme supporting the BTA to deliver on the Bangsamoro Organic Law, funded through the UK Government’s Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF). WFD’s work in the Bangsamoro addresses some of the most pressing areas of the transition, including:
- Strengthening the Bangsamoro Parliament and developing the expertise of its members and staff;
- Supporting the development of a political party system that fits the new parliamentary frame and which allows for meaningful representation for all peoples of the Bangsamoro;
- Supporting women political leaders in the Bangsamoro to work together to identify and influence policies and laws.
WFD is launching a Committee Mentorship Programme seeking to pair mentors from the UK and ASEAN region with Bangsamoro parliamentary committees. The aim of this mentorship programme is to establish peer-to-peer relationships between international mentors and chairs and members of Bangsamoro parliamentary committees and provide support to perform their core oversight and legislative functions. We […]
Matthew Hedges, who was until recently Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Paraguay, will take the reigns as Westminster Foundation for Democracy’s Regional Director for Asia and the Americas in September 2020. He will be responsible for the strategy, programming and team management across both regions. Matthew joins Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD) following two decades as […]