Out of Africa and into Westminster as politicians shadow O’Donnell

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two female parliamentarians from Africa have been shadowing East Lothian Labour MP Fiona O’Donnell as part of a scheme to increase understanding between Commonwealth politicians.

Esther Obeng Dappah MP, from Ghana, and Mabinty Sillah MP, from Sierra Leone, swapped experience with Ms O’Donnell as they joined her at Westminster.

Ms O’Donnell said: “The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association UK offers opportunities for politicians from the UK to meet fellow parliamentarians from other parts of the Commonwealth.

“It plays a crucial role in strengthening our links with other Commonwealth nations and promoting parliamentary democracy.

“It was clear that we have much in common, but there are also a lot of differences. For instance, they told me that MPs in many African countries are sometimes expected to pay for operations for their constituents, which is yet another reason to be thankful for our NHS.”