April 1, 2015 By Jariatu S. Bangura
Parliament yesterday approved Ismail Sheriff Tarasid Tarawalie as the new National Security Coordinator, following his nomination by President Ernest Bai Koroma few weeks ago.
The new national security chief replaces retired Brigadier Kawuta Dumbuya, a career military officer.
Tarawali is the first civilian to be appointed to the post since the institution was established in 2002.
However, he has served in various positions since he joined the institution in 2002 as Assistant Team Leader, Monitoring and Oversight Department, and subsequently as Deputy National Security Coordinator in 2013.
Asked by Members of Parliament if they could attend ONS meetings at the constituency level, Tarawalie said, “I think you have a role to play. You are very important stakeholders and we expect members to visit us and our offices nationwide, to ask questions, give information and make suggestions because you are key players within your constituencies and your role is very important in what we do as a sector. Our meetings are open to key stakeholders.”
Chairman of the parliamentary Appointments Committee, Hon. Ibrahim R. Bundu, noted that the Office of National Security (ONS) is a very important institution as compared to their counters in the United States of America and in the United Kingdom.
He urged the security coordinating outfit to position itself in such a way that is visible and recognisable by the citizenry, and use the expertise of retired police officers in maintaining law and order.
Meanwhile, the following nominees were also approved by Parliament: Mrs. Hasiatu Gbassa Jalloh-Agbaje and Henry Yamba Kamara as board members, National Commission for Privatization; Moiwo Makaya and Dr. Lawrence R. Sesay as board members, Sierra Leone Road Authority; and Joan S. Benya as board member, Sierra Leone State Lottery.