Brussels, 2 December 2013/ ACP: Member of Parliament from Jamaica Hon. Fitz Jackson has been elected by his peers as Chair of the ACP Parliamentary Assembly and Co-President of the ACP-EU joint Assembly, alongside Belgian MEP and former EU Development Commissioner Hon. Louis Michel.
A long time politician, Hon. Jackson first entered Parliament as a representative of South St. Catherine two decades ago in July 1994. He was appointed as a minister of state from 2000 to 2007, including five years at the Ministry of Finance and Planning. He also served as Chairman of the Economy and Production Standing Committee of Parliament.
Aside from politics, he is currently CEO of foodstuff manufacturer Suntrax Corporation.
In accepting the reins last week from outgoing Chair, Hon. Joyce Laboso of Kenya, Hon. Jackson thanked his fellow parliamentarians, and pledged his commitment to deepen the solidarity of the 79-member group of states and “preserve the cohesion of the ACP”.
“We must never forget the genesis of this organisation… We have the ability to strengthen this organisation and make it viable in serving the aspirations of people in Africa, in the Caribbean and in the Pacific,” he said.
His new role lasts for two years, and involves co-directing the work of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) while also coordinating meetings and work programmes on the ACP side.
The JPA is the only institution of its kind in the world, where elected representatives of various countries sit together regularly with the aim of promoting the cooperation of North and South. This includes parliamentarians of 78 African, Caribbean and Pacific states who, under the Cotonou Agreement, meet their 78 European Parliament counterparts in plenary session for one week twice a year.
– ACP Press