January 26, 2018 By Ishmael Sallieu Koroma
Campaign Manager for the National Grand Coalition (NGC) has stated that they were investigating the nationality of the All Peoples Congress(APC) party standard bearer, Dr. Samura Mathew Kamara, and that they might subsequently file a petition against his candidature.
Sulaiman Banja Tejan Sei was hosted at the popular Radio Democracy 98.1 Good Morning Salone program, where he reiterated that the party’s legal team would file their petition against Dr. Kamara after accessing documents to ascertain that the latter holds another country’s passport because ‘he who asserts must prove.’
Whilst reacting to the ruling that was passed in favour of their party standard bearer, Dr. Kandeh Yumkella, the campaign manager said the ruling did surprise the party because they knew from the onset that it was a ‘frivolous’ petition.
Dr. Yumkella’s provisional parliamentary nominations was last week petitioned by the All Peoples Congress Party (APC) parliamentary candidate ,Abu Bakarr Sankoh in constituency 062 Kambia District- on the grounds that the former holds a dual citizenship -and that he is ineligible to run for parliament seat- but the NEC district office had ruled in favour of the former.
According to Lawyer Banja Tejan –Sie the petition made against their candidate didn’t make any sense and that NEC made no mistake to rule in their favour.
When asked whether they would present document to court that their presidential candidate didn’t hold dual citizenship, Tejan Sie said they would surrender the renounced document when the need arises.
He said he doesn’t think any court will rule against Dr. Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella that he is not qualified to contest in Sierra Leone because he has renounced it since November.
“Dr. Kandeh Yumkella is a Sierra Leonean and a Sierra Leonean alone and will continue to be a Sierra Leonean,” he emphasised.
He asserted that the whole essence of the petition against them was a political witch-hunt, noting that the APC cannot sway them away from winning the March 7th, 2018 elections.
APC Lawyer and member of the Publicity Committee, Ibrahim Sorie Koroma, who was also in the studio said the decision of the National Returning Officer in the NEC district office of Kambia was very appalling and disappointing, stating that the APC lawyers were in Kambia to represent their client but were not allowed to do so.
“What the law provides for is for the Returning Officer to decide on the validity of the objection through the evidence but we were rejected. In fact, the NEC official put out the ruling before even looking at the evidence,” he claimed.
Lawyer Koroma stated that the APC legal members were appalled by the conduct of the commission especially at this moment.
“He has already prepared the ruling before hearing the evidence,” Lawyer Koroma alleged, emphasizing that the APC Party was very disappointed at the ruling.
“The duty of Dr. Yumkella is to show Sierra Leoneans, when and how he renounced the US nationality.”
He asserted that it is not APC party that was challenging Dr. Yumkella but the people who contested with him, stating that the NGC presidential candidate owed a duty to the country to come out and show his documents of renunciation to the public.