First, please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Digal Haio and I am second year law student at Osgoode Hall law school in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. I enjoy working in the fields of community activism and advocacy, and have been involved with such groups as the Canadian Somali Congress, the Canadian International Peace Project and the Somali Women and Children’s Support Network. I have also been a long standing contributor to the ethnic community newspaper, the Somali Press where I have launched a youth section aimed at addressing issues pertaining to Canadian-Somali youth and Canadian youth in general.
I am currently conducting an internship program with the Pan-African Parliament (PAP), an organ of the African Union (AU), in Johannesburg, South Africa from June 22nd 2009-Augut 26th 2009.
Pursuant to Article 17 of the Constitutive Act of the African Union, The PAP is an institution informed by a vision to provide a common platform for African peoples and their grass-roots organizations to be more involved in discussions and decision-making on the problems and challenges facing the continent and also ensure the full participation of the African people in the development and economic integration of the continent. Currently, the PAP has 46 Member States, of which there are 5 MP’s per Member State and exercises consultative and advisory powers only.
While I am here I have been keeping a journal which highlights all of my personal and professional experiences during my internship. I have uploaded this journal into a blog that will better allow me to share these experiences with the general public and in particular with anyone who may be interested in interning with the PAP or a similar African institution in the future.
The blog can be accessed at: http://greetingsfromjoburg.blogspot.com/
Also for more information on the PAP and their mandate please visit: http://www.pan-african-parliament.org/