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APC throws White Paper into the dust bin, says it’s illegal

September 29, 2020

BY Mohamed M. Sesay

Nonviolence – the summit of bravery – SIERRA LEONE TELEGRAPH

APC Scribe, Ambassador Osman Yansaneh

The main opposition All People’s Congress (APC) party has in a press statement issued  over the weekend, vehemently refuted, rejected and discountenanced recommendations contained in the Government White Paper and Reports of the three Commissions of Inquiry (COI), claiming that the contents in the White Paper and that of the COI are politically motivated, legally flawed and procedurally defective, therefore they would not subject themselves to any of the recommendations in the Government White Paper.

The party assures it fullest support for Persons of Interest to challenge findings and recommendations of the Government White Paper and COI reports politically, diplomatically and legally at both local and international levels, and equally assist Persons of Interest to address substantive issues contained in the Government White Paper and COI reports in due course.

The release added that most of those findings in the reports are inaccurate, malicious and borne out of a miss-appreciation of facts and law.

The APC further argued that the reports in the Commissions of Inquiry are the interpretations of the ‘overt’ intentions of the GTT report, wherein members of the Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) who served on the GTT assumed the roles of investigators, persecutors, interpreters and enforcers of the law.

The party noted that from the outset, the sole aim of the SLPP government was and has always been to unfairly malign and victimize APC stalwarts for political gains.

The release continues that the three Commissioners of the COI are in breach of Section 150 of the Constitution and Order 62 Rules 1 and 2 of the High Court Rules 2007, which give only the Chief Justice the power to prescribe Practice Directions, issued Practice Directions dated 31st January, 2019, adopting the High Court Rules 2007 in regard proceedings of the COI.

The party added that the above statutory provisions compounded the unconstitutionality and illegality of the COI and their proceedings.

It further noted that from the inception of the COI, Members of Parliament of APC questioned the constitutionality of common paragraphs 6 Constitutional Instruments No. 64, 65 and 67 of 2018, setting up the Commissions of Inquiry on the basis that they are in contravention of Section 150 of the Constitution of Sierra Leone Act No. 6 of 1991 (the Constitution), but claimed that the objection was discountenanced by both SLPP Members of Parliament and expectedly the Executive Arm of government.

‘’In view of the facts narrated above, the APC feels compelled to restate that the findings and recommendations in the Government White Paper and COI reports are a product of process marred by unconstitutionality, illegality, procedural corruption, political vindictiveness and malice. An unconstitutional and unaccountable process cannot hold Persons of Interest most of whom are our members accountable. Period! ,’’ the release concludes.

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