Kenya To Host Her Debut Parliamentary Intelligence-Security Forum
Parliament of Kenya, in a move initiated by the National Assembly’s Departmental Committee on Administration and National Security, is scheduled to host its inaugural Parliamentary Intelligence-Security forum set to take place on Monday 7thand Tuesday 8th of October 2019, in Nairobi Kenya.
The two-day Forum, set to be officially opened by Speaker of the National Assembly, Hon. Justin B. Muturi, will be held at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC), and is expected to provide a platform for Members of Parliament to understand their obligations as political leaders on matters intelligence and security, as well as encourage them to take responsibility in enhancing the Country’s security while still enjoying the freedom of expression.
According to the Committee Chairperson Hon. Paul Koinange, this forum will be the 15th Edition despite being Kenya’s first, and is expected to attract more than two hundred and fifty (250) participants from across the globe.
“The convention will afford participants an opportunity to share knowledge and build networks on information and intelligence sharing among allies that is expected to assist in addressing common threats shared by all peaceful nations. It will also give Legislators an opportunity to learn good practices on how to improve on existing legislations on national security through enhanced oversight and transparency” said Hon Koinange in press briefing preceding the conference.
Locally, the convention attracts participations from Members of Parliament from Kenya, among them chair persons and vice chairpersons of committees from both the National Assembly and the Senate. Drawn from across the world, will be participants from the USA, France, Nigeria, Germany, Columbia, Mexico, Malawi, Zambia, Argentina, among others whose participation has been confirmed.
The Parliamentary Intelligence-Security Forum was initiated in the year 2014 by Congressman Robert Pittenger, MP of the USA Congress, to provide awareness on security matters while seeking collaboration with USA allies to defeat terrorism; an avenue that has provided the opportunity for Members of Parliament throughout the world to learn from experts on vital matters of national security.
The motivation for initiating the forum was informed by the fact that Members of Parliament were largely uninformed of the intelligence work of the Executive branches of governments, and as such, were critical of U.S. policies related to intelligence data sharing.
The initial forum addressed concerns regarding privacy, civil liberties, and America’s oversight. Other discussion topics incorporated over time include collaboration on counter terrorism financing, intelligence sharing, block chain, cyber security and malicious foreign investment of sensitive technology, among others.
The initial Forum in the fall of 2014 was attended by 124 Members of Parliament from 24 European Nations. Over the last five years, 11 Parliamentary Fora have been organized involving over 700 Members of Parliament and foreign Ambassadors from 68 countries. Experts from the government, private sector, and prominent think tanks have participated in the Fora, held in Washington, Buenos Aires, Vienna, Berlin, and Riga.